Crescent Kashmir

Teen guns down 2 in Bangkok shopping mall

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BANGKOK: A 14-year-old boy was arrested on Tuesday after a shooting at a packed Bangkok mall that left two people dead and five wounded, and sent hundreds of panicked shoppers running in terror into the streets.

Witnesses spoken about chaotic scenes as shots rang out at the upmarket Siam Paragon mall in the heart of the Thai capital around 4:30pm (0930 GMT).

The shooting comes just days before the first anniversary of the deadliest massacre in modern Thai history, when an ex-policeman armed with a gun and knife attacked a nursery in the country’s north, murdering 24 children and 12 adults. National Police Chief Torsak Sukwimol told reporters that two women — one Chinese, one from Myanmar — were killed in the mall shooting, and five other people wounded.

He said the 14-year-old suspect was in custody but was too confused to undergo questioning.

“He is a mental patient at Rajavithi hospital and he has not been taking his medication,” Torsak said. “He said it felt like someone told him to ‘go shoot people’. It’s like there’s another him. This is what we got from the initial talk with him.”

Video footage showed a long-haired boy wearing a black shirt, glasses and a cap with a US flag motif being taken into custody by police. Yuthana Srettanan, director of the Erawan Emergency Centre, told reporters that all but one of those who were shot were women.

Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin visited the scene of the shooting as well as calling on the wounded in hospital. Srettha posted on X, formerly Twitter, that he had spoken to the Chinese ambassador and offered condolences.

Published in Dawn, October 4th, 2023


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