THAILAND-BANGKOK: Gunfires, explosions and arson rock several protest sites leaving many injured
Meanwhile a double-decker bus parked near the protest site was also damaged in what the driver said was an arson attack. The bus carried protesters from the South to join the mass protest in Bangkok.
The most serious case was reported near Hua Charng bridge or near the Pathumwan intersection where several thousands of protesters were rallying to oust the care taker prime minister.
Gunshots were fired by unknown number of gunmen into the security guards of the protesters at about midnight forcing passers-by, security guards, and protesters near the bridge to run for cover.
Guards said the gun shots were fired from either the overhead BTS sky train station and tall building nearby.
The gunshots were fired periodically but in aseries for half and hour.
One security guard and two protesters were injured. They were admitted to Chulalongkorn hospital.
Meanwhile ping pong bombs were also thrown into the security guards of the Network of Students and People for the Reform of Thailand (NSPRT)last night. But there was no injury. Throughout the night till dawn, explosions were heard neasr where the gusrds stayed to ensure safety for protesters.
In another related incident, a double-decker bus parked in front of the Narng Lerng horse race course was also attacked by arsonist.
The bus catched fire on its rear tires and door. However security guards of the race course helped to put out the fire before it engulfed the whole bus.
The driver said he and his passengers came from Phatthalung province to join the NSPRT protest to oust the prime minister since Sunday
He said he was sleeping inthe bus and smelled smoke from behind. He immediately rushed the bus and saw a car driving out immediately. He strongly believed the arson attack was from the anti-government protest motive
Maj-Gen Wara Boonyasith, commander of the First Infantry Division of the Royal Guards said he and the chief-of-staff of the First Army Region Maj-Gen Natapon Srisawat were ordered by the army chief to visit soldiers who are helping the police to keep peace and order near the bridge after last night’s shootings.
He said that the army chief was concerned about their safety and instructed them to also take care of themselves in case they have to go out and they should go in pairs.
He said the army chief also instructed them to provide immediate security for the people but also avoiding to get themselves involved in the conflicts.
The army chief ordered soldiers to step up security at the bridge as it is near Srapathum Palace and is on the route of royal travels.