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Mass Shooting in Northern Thailand - 37 People Killed

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  • Mass Shooting in Northern Thailand - 37 People Killed

    King, Queen and PM Prayut to visit mass shooting victims in northeast Thailand

    Today, H.M. King Maha Vajiralongkorn, H.M. Queen Suthida and Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha will travel to Nong Bua Lamphu Province, in northeast Thailand, to visit injured victims in hospital and to offer support to the families of those who lost their lives in yesterday’s tragic daycare centre massacre.
    The gunman killed 37 people in total, most of them young children under 5 years old. Around 12 more people are injured.

    The royals are scheduled to arrive at Uthai Sawan Young Children’s Development Centre at around midday. PM Prayut will follow, flying from Bangkok to Udon Thani province at 1:00 pm and travelling the remaining 84 kilometres by car.

    PM Prayut said he will visit the injured victims in Nong Bua Lamphu Hospital and also offer support to victims’ families in Uthai Sawan subdistrict.

    Afterwards, PM Prayut will chair a meeting with the Nong Bua Lamphu Provincial Administrative Organisation and other relevant agencies regarding what steps to take next.
    Officials and organisations worldwide have expressed their condolences to the victims of yesterday’s devastating attack.

    The tragedy is one of the deadliest mass shootings to ever occur in Thai history.

  • #2
    Thais unhappy with Prawit’s response to daycare centre massacre

    The Thai people were not impressed with the insensitive statement delivered by Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan about the daycare centre massacre yesterday. Thai reporters asked Deputy PM Prawit how he planned to prevent a similar scenario in the future.

    He said… “What can I do about it? He is a drug addict.”
    Prawit offered his condolences to the victim’s families, admitting that he did not expect this kind of tragedy to happen in Thailand but his response was pretty weak. Prawit insisted that the root of the incident was drugs and insisted the government was always trying to help people in the country with addiction recovery and improve the drug situation in the country.

    “I am sorry for the losses of all the families of the victims. The killer has already died, and his family has also. I never expected that this kind of incident would happen. It happened because of the drugs, and the government has always tried to help all drug addicts. It wasn’t lucky that the man had committed suicide because his family, wife and son were also killed.”
    The Deputy PM was a little tetchy when asked how he would prevent similar situations emerging from within the nation’s police force.

    “What can I do about it? He was a drug addict and has already departed. ”
    The death toll from the massacre at the daycare centre in the northeastern province of Nong Bua Lamphu climbed to 37 today while 10 victims are being treated in hospitals.

    The killer, 34 year old Panya Kamrap, murdered his wife and son before committing suicide. He was a former police officer who was fired due to his addiction to drugs.

    This isn’t the first mass shooting in Thailand. The Korat or Nakhon Ratchasima shooting two years ago is still deeply engrained in Thai people’s memory. Many Thai people were not impressed with Deputy PM Prawit’s response to tackling gun and drug crime in the kingdom. They believe the government should take responsibility for the incident and implement stronger measures to prevent it from happening again.

    Prawit later urged the relevant government departments to rally around stressed police officers with mental health problems and suffering from drug addiction. He also asked government departments to scrutinise the personal information of each officer in the recruitment stage for employing them to prevent a similar scenario in the future.


    • #3
      Timeline of the mass shooting in Thailand

      Timeline of the shooting at a childcare center in Nong Bua Lam Phu yesterday, which left 38 dead (including the gunman, his wife, and child) and 10 injured.
      • 12.50 PM
        A gunman opens fire on the center in Na Klang district of the Northeastern province of Nong Bua Lam Phu. He escapes in a pick-up truck, running into other people’s vehicles and killing people along the way.
      • 2:00 PM
        Nong Bua Lam Phu police posted an alert for the gunman, identified as Pol Sgt Panya Khamrab, on their Facebook account. Asking locals to look for the culprit.
      • 2.30 PM
        National police chief Pol Gen Damrongsak Kittiprapas and senior officers fly to the province.
      • 3:00 PM
        The deputy provincial governor confirms the gunman was a former policeman based in Na Wang district, some 5 kilometers from the scene. The assailant is later cornered in his house by police, who try to negotiate with him before he burnt his pick-up truck, killed himself, his wife, and their child.
      • 4.42 PM
        Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha expresses his deepest condolences to the bereaved families upon learning of the incident during a trip to Phetchabun to check on flood victims.
      • 7:00 PM
        38 people (including the gunman, his wife and child) are confirmed killed, 24 of them children and 10injured.
      • Here is a summary of the incident:
        Total death toll including shooter is 38 - according to the police
        Attacker kills 24 children, 13 adults in rampage
        Thai daycare center was for children aged 2-5
        Most child victims were stabbed - according to the police
        Attacker killed his wife, child, and shot himself
        Their Majesties the King and Queen of Thailand will take all the injured under royal patronage and sponsor a royal cremation for all the killed victims.
        The Thai government ordered all Thai flags to be lowered to half-mast on Friday


      • #4
        Massacre in Thailand raises questions on gun control

        In the aftermath of the horrific massacre at a daycare centre in northeast Thailand yesterday, questions have been raised about the kingdom’s gun control laws. The murderer, 34 year old former police officer Panya Kamrap, had been fired due to his addiction to drugs.

        Many Thai people have been unimpressed with Deputy PM Prawit’s response to tackling gun and drug crime in the kingdom. Thai reporters asked Prawit how he planned to prevent a similar scenario in the future from within Thailand’s police force. Prawit replied, “What can I do about it? He was a drug addict and has already departed. ”

        Prawit later urged the relevant government departments to rally around stressed police officers with mental health problems and those suffering from drug addiction. He also asked government departments to scrutinise the personal information of each officer in the recruitment stage for employing them to prevent a similar scenario in the future.

        Thailand was not on the list of 10 countries with the highest rates of violent gun deaths per 100,000 residents in 2019, published by the World Population Review. Yet, it was ranked as Southeast Asia’s second most-dangerous country in terms of gun crime after the Philippines. Thailand recorded 2,351 firearms deaths in 2019 – approximately 31% higher than the numbers for Pakistan, a country routinely described as “war-torn” and alleged home of thousands of terrorists.

        Other major past shootings in Thailand include the Nakhon Ratchasima shootings of 2020, and 2021. In 2021 a soldier killed 21 people and injured dozens more in the province. A year earlier, in 2020, a soldier shot 29 people and wounded dozens of others before he was shot dead by commandos.

        A report by Thai PBS last month revealed some alarming facts about gun use in Thailand. People in Thailand hold an estimated 10.3 million guns both legally and illegally. As of last year, the number of registered guns in Thailand totalled just over six million, according to the Interior Ministry. That means there are four million unregistered or illicit firearms in Thailand.

        Under the law, people with no occupation or income or a fixed place of residence cannot own guns in Thailand. Drug abusers and other criminals are also banned from owning guns. But gun experts have said that people can get around the laws with bribes and “connections in the bureaucracy,” according to Thai PBS.

        Panya was dismissed from the Thai police force in January last year for failing a drug test. He had served as a police officer for 10 years. His superiors previously warned him over his casual drug use but he was eventually dismissed after being reportedly caught with pills containing meth. According to Thai media, Panya had been addicted to drugs ever since he was in school. But he was still able to get his hands on a gun.

        One colleague of Panya made known that he pulled a gun on a bank manager who woke him as he slept outside of the bank he was supposed to be protecting.

        Another colleague added he constantly clashed with his wife over his affairs. Panya also confronted neighbours for allegedly being too noisy, and one time he shot another neighbour’s dog.


        • #5
          5 survivors of northeast Thailand massacre on road to recovery

          Five survivors of the horrific daycare centre massacre in northeast Thailand last week are on the road to recovery. These include three children and two adults. Four of the survivors are in intensive care units at Nong Bua Lam Phu Hospital, while one is at Udon Thani Hospital.

          One boy, Kanpong Suana, or Nong Kan, is moving after he underwent an operation for cerebral hemorrhage. This was after he was either shot or stabbed. Doctors said the operation’s result was satisfactory, the Bangkok Post reported.

          The condition of another boy, Thanatpong Somparn or Nong Sumaee, is also improving. Nong Sumaee was shot twice in the head at the daycare centre. After an operation, Nong Sumaee can now follow the doctor’s instructions.

          The director of Nong Bua Lam Phu Hospital, Dr Phaithoon, said that doctors are trying to help Nong Samaee breathe without a ventilator. Nong Samaee’s mother said that her son could make a victory sign with his fingers and open his mouth to speak.

          Another boy, three year old Nong Mick, is recovering from brain surgery in Udon Thani Hospital. In the first 20 hours following the surgery, there were no complications and Mick was in stable condition, according to hospital director Dr Sumon Tansunthornwiwat. He is still being monitored closely, Thai PBS reported.

          Mick was travelling in the sidecar of his mother’s motorbike with his grandma when the gunman, having just finished his killing spree in the daycare centre, crashed into them in his pickup truck. Mick’s mother was killed in the crash. The gunman got out of his car and attacked him and his grandmother with a knife.

          One of the adults, Benjawan Panlert, has regained consciousness. He is also moving, and can now breathe without a ventilator.

          Another adult, Charoen Chaikruean, has also stopped depending on a ventilator. She is also starting to move more easily.

          Thai Public Health Minister Anutin said that the Department of Mental Health will send a team of more than 60 psychiatrists, doctors, and other professionals to help the traumatised families of the victims of the massacre. The spokesman for the Royal Thai Police said that the national chief General Damrongsak Kittiprapas will go to Nong Bua Lam Phu to hand over donation money of about 7.8 million baht to the victims’ relatives tomorrow.