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Divided Thailand votes in crucial election

Thailand votes on Sunday in a closely fought election seen as pivotal to the future of the deeply divided kingdom, after years of political deadlock and often bloody street protests. The poll is the first major electoral test for the government since mass opposition rallies paralysed Bangkok last year, scaring away foreign tourists and sparking a military crackdown that left about 90 people dead. Now the tense vote could herald a comeback for fugitive former premier Thaksin Shinawatra and his political allies. Ousted in a 2006 military coup and now living in self-imposed exile, the ex-tycoon has tapped his youngest…