Thailand’s PM Yingluck Shinawatra has survived a no-confidence vote in parliament, amid major street protests in Bangkok.
The motion was brought by the opposition Democrat Party, but Yingluck Shinawatra’s Pheu Thai party dominate the chamber and voted it down.
Yingluck Shinawatra’s government is facing the biggest demonstrations to hit Thailand since the violence of 2010.
UN chief Ban Ki-moon has voiced concern over the tensions and urged restraint.
Protests began in Bangkok on Sunday. Since then, demonstrators calling on the government to step down have marched on ministries and government bodies in an attempt to shut them down.
The demonstrators, who are led by a former opposition party lawmaker, say Yingluck Shinawatra’s government is controlled by her brother – the ousted former leader Thaksin Shinawatra.
Yingluck Shinawatra has invoked special powers allowing curfews and road closures and police have also ordered the arrest of the protest leader – but so far no move has been made to detain him.
The protests have been largely peaceful and correspondents have described the mood of the rallies as friendly.
On Wednesday, hundreds of protesters surrounded Thailand’s top crime-fighting agency, forcing its evacuation.
Ban Ki-moon has urged all sides to “to exercise the utmost restraint, refrain from the use of violence and to show full respect for the rule of law and human rights”.
Yingluck Shinawatra won 297 votes, easily surviving the lower house censure motion, while 134 voted against her.
So far protesters have succeeded only in disrupting the business of government for a few days, and the authorities have been careful not to risk violence by confronting them.
Thaksin Shinawatra was ousted in a military coup in 2006 that left the country bitterly divided.
In 2010, thousands of “red-shirt” Thaksin Shinawatra supporters occupied key parts of the capital. More than 90 people, mostly civilian protesters, died over the course of the two-month sit-in.
Yingluck Shinawatra and the Pheu Thai Party were subsequently voted into office, and Thailand’s political landscape has remained largely stable since then.
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