Thailand's military says it has taken control of the government, revoked the constitution and declared martial law in a coup.
A statement broadcast on Thai television late Tuesday says forces loyal to Thailand's King have taken control of Bangkok and would decide on political reforms. Military vehicles rolled through the streets and surrounded government buildings. There have been no reports of violence.
The military announced that the country's stock market, banks and schools will close Wednesday and called top civil servants to a meeting in Bangkok.
Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra is in New York where he canceled a speech to the United Nations General Assembly Tuesday. A government official said Mr. Thaksin would soon leave New York, but would not say where he was going. Officials with him insist the prime minister is still in control.
The U.S. government has issued a statement urging the Thai people to remain calm.
In April, Mr. Thaksin dissolved parliament and called elections after weeks of demonstrations calling for his resignation. The opposition boycotted the election, however, and the courts later deemed the poll illegal.
Thailand has experienced 18 coups or coup attempts since it became a constitutional monarchy in 1932. The last one was in 1991.