Daily US Times, Bangkok: A Thai soldier has killed at least 20 people and injured many others in a gun rampage in the Thai city of Nakhon Ratchasima.
The soldier’s name is Jakraphanth Thomma. He is a junior officer. He killed his commanding officer before stealing weapons from a military camp.
The suspect then continued his attack in a shopping centre, where he is believed to be holed up now. He initially posted updates on social media.
Security forces surrounded the complex and rescued hundreds of people while searching for the gunman, with shots ringing out.
The motive of the gunman is not clear yet.
The latest situation
The incident happened on Saturday evening at the Terminal 21 shopping centre in Nakhon Ratchasima, also known as Korat. Authorities sealed off the centre.
Troops and police entered the centre to search for the suspect and help those trapped inside, with ambulances brought up to the complex to ferry away from the injured.
There were sporadic reports of further gunshots throughout the morning and it lasts into the early hours of the morning.
The Thai soldier tried to escape via the back of the building but he could not manage it.
Local media reported that at least one police officer was killed and at least three injured in the early morning exchanges, but this has not been officially confirmed.
It is not known how many people are still in the shopping complex now.
Local news media Bankok Post reported that the suspect is 32 years old and he had taken hostages, but this also has not been officially confirmed.
Authorities took his mother to the shopping centre to try to persuade him to give himself up.
One of the people who managed to come out of the complex said, she and others hid in a bathroom on the fourth floor, before fleeing to the second and hiding under a restaurant table for three hours, hearing at least four gunshots before she saw some soldiers and could get to safety.
Anutin Charnvirakul, Public Health Minister, confirmed 16 dead. Four more died in the hospital later. A total of 31 have been injured with 10 of them in a critical condition. But there are fears the numbers could rise.
Thai soldier killed at least 20 people in shooting spree
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