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Thai protesters besiege government building

Hundreds of disgruntled Thai farmers breached razor-wire barricades outside the prime minister's temporary office to protest the government's delayed payments from last year's rice crops, AP reports.

A flagship policy of Yingluck Shinawatra's government was to buy Thailand's staple grain at above-market prices, aiming to woo votes from millions of farmers.

But the program has accumulated losses of at least $4.46 billion and has been dogged by corruption allegations.

Government officials said payments were delayed because anti-government protests triggered parliament's dissolution in December.

The farmers previously blocked main highways in several parts of the country and came to the capital this month to demand their payments.

Rice is Thailand's staple grain and one of its main exports.

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