May has been explosive for Thailand. The country's six-month-old political crisis, which has seen the ousting of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, attacks on anti-government protesters and the imposition of martial law, reached new heights: a coup d'etat.
Army chief Prayuth Chan-ocha announced in a televised address late Thursday that military forces were taking control of the government, ordering rival protesters to leave Bangkok and imposing a nationwide curfew between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. Many media channels have been censored following the announcement, including CNBC.
While the country is no stranger to army takeovers -19 coups have been attempted since 1932- experts told CNBC this coup posed particular worry.
Sri Mulyani Indrawati, Managing Director of the World Bank, told CNBC that "[Thailand's] political allies need to agree that the country must be governed and ruled in agreement of both the system and the mechanism to elect leaders that can restore trust to their people."
Kristie Kenny, U.S. ambassador to Thailand said that the coup posed a serious concern to U.S.-Thai relations, economically and in terms of security. Over the last 24 hours, a number of countries, including Singapore and the U.K., have issued warnings against traveling to the popular tourist hotspot.
Take a look at this month's images from the country's political crisis.
-Posted May 23, 2014.
Army soldiers stand guard outside the Government House in Bangkok on May 23, a day after the Thai military seized power. The site was previously a popular location for anti-government protesters.
Soldiers move foreign press away as they secure the venue grounds for peace talks between pro- and anti-government groups in Bangkok on May 22.
A security guard stands at the Bangkok Skytrain's entrance after it closed at 9pm, stranding thousands of people as they headed home to meet the 10pm curfew on May 22.
A lone anti-government protester sits on the ground after a curfew started on May 22.
Citizens pose for a portrait with army soldiers standing guard at the venue grounds for peace talks between pro-and anti-government groups on May 22.
Protesters and bystanders examine the scene of a deadly drive-by attack on an anti-government rally site at the landmark Democracy Monument on May 15 in Bangkok.
People stand outside a burnt school building and stores that were allegedly set on fire by separatist militants in the Sungai Padi district of Thailand's restive southern province of Narathiwat on May 12.
Newspapers featuring ousted Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra on their front pages on May 8.