News At Least 20 Die in Bombing at Popular Bangkok Shrine

Discussion in 'The Howard Stern Show' started by dawg, Aug 17, 2015.

  1. dawg

    dawg In The Dog House Staff Member

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    BANGKOK — A bomb placed inside a Bangkok religious shrine frequented by tourists exploded Monday evening, killing at least 20 people, hurling body parts onto the pavement, shattering building windows and creating panic in one of the city’s most popular districts.

    At least 123 people were reported wounded in what Thailand’s top police official and others called a vicious act meant to target civilians.

    The explosion came at a particularly busy time of day at the Erawan Shrine, an important tourist attraction in Bangkok’s main shopping area.

    But Thai officials offered no clue as to who might have been responsible for the blast, which appeared to be the worst by far in a series of explosions that have occasionally disrupted the country since the Thai military seized power in a May 2014 coup.

    As of early Tuesday there was no claim of responsibility.

    The police discovered at least two additional devices they suspected were unexploded bombs inside the shrine and said other bombs may have been placed in the area, yelling at bystanders: “Get out! Get out!”

    Some Thai news media reported later that the suspicious devices did not appear to be bombs.

    The Bangkok Post reported on its website that the shrine bomb, apparently placed just inside the fenced Erawan compound, detonated at 6:55 p.m. The scale of the explosion set vehicles in the adjacent intersection ablaze and bowed the iron fence of the shrine outward.

    Debris and at least five motorcycles were scattered in the intersection, including one in flames, as dozens of emergency vehicles arrived on the scene. Bloodstains were visible at a nearby shopping mall, an indication of the force of the blast.

    Some news accounts said an explosive device had detonated on the flaming motorcycle. But the head of Thailand’s national police force, Somyot Poompanmoung, said on television that the explosion “was not a car bomb.”

    Mr. Somyot said whoever was responsible knew there would be many bystanders at a busy time for the shrine. He described the attack as “vicious and ruthless.”

    Thai officials said it was premature to conclude the attack had been politically motivated. But The Bangkok Post reported that all 438 city schools would be closed on Tuesday for safety reasons.

    A Defense Ministry spokesman, Kongcheep Tantrawanich, was quoted by the newspaper as saying the bombing was “the work of those who have lost political interests and want to destroy the ‘happy time’ of Thai people.”

    The authorities said a citizen of the Philippines and a “Chinese” person were among the dead, without specifying a nationality. A statement issued by a nearby hospital said one of the victims was a young girl.

    The authorities placed white cloths over parts of bodies ripped apart by the explosion at the Ratchaprasong intersection, the same area where a protest that stretched for months was dispersed by the military in 2010.

    While bodies of the dead were ripped apart, the shrine itself appeared not to have suffered extensive damage. Shards of shattered glass littered the immediate area, but a small pavilion inside the shrine compound appeared to remain largely intact.

    Charoen Sida, 37, a security guard who was preparing to start a 7 p.m. shift at a shopping mall next to the site, witnessed the immediate aftermath.

    “Everyone was screaming and running,” he said. “There was a huge fire coming from a motorcycle. No one dared to go into the intersection.”

    Winai Petploy, a rescue worker who carried away the remains of the dead, said bodies had been torn apart by the blast. “I carried one out, and then I carried the other half out,” he said.

    A police officer at the scene said the authorities were focused on a possible suspect who was seen arriving at the shrine around 15 minutes before the explosion. She placed a bag at the shrine and then left. The officer, who declined to be identified because he was not authorized to speak to the news media, said the woman had been overheard speaking Thai.

    More than two hours after the blast, the police led teams of dogs through the area in a search for further explosives.

    The Erawan is a Hindu shrine popular with both Thais and foreign tourists, especially ethnic Chinese visitors from Singapore, Hong Kong and Taiwan, among other East Asian nations. The shrine is believed to hold mystical powers, and those who pray for good fortune include students, job seekers and couples who have trouble conceiving.

    In 2006 a man described by the authorities as deranged was beaten to death after he damaged the shrine.

    There have been at least four bombings in Thailand since the military seized power last year, including one outside a shopping mall and another in front of courts. But none came close to the power of the shrine bomb.

    The military has come under increasing criticism in recent months, as Thailand’s economy has faltered, and as a timeline for restoration of democracy has become increasingly vague.

    Nonetheless, overt opposition to the military has been muted, and the army still retains considerable support among the Bangkok elite.

    The generals in charge of Thailand have on several occasions claimed that organized attempts to subvert their rule are threatening the nation, but critics say the military has not built a convincing case that would justify an indefinite continuation of its rule.

    Despite its political troubles, Thailand remains one of the most popular tourist destinations in Asia, especially with a growing contingent of mainland Chinese tourists.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/18/world/asia/bangkok-explosion.html?_r=0
     
  2. CrucifiedAGT

    CrucifiedAGT He's Around VIP

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    If obama had a Bangkok shrine....
     
  3. stash

    stash 2017 Kimbra of All Media VIP

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  4. superstone

    superstone Well-Known Member

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    Confucius say, he who walk sideways through airport turnstile going to Bangkok.
     
    TheLACritic and SalsMasterShake like this.
  5. fredrogers

    fredrogers Well-Known Member

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    Lemme guess, the religion of peace again?
     
  6. SouthernListen

    SouthernListen I don't follow the crowd. Sorry about that. VIP

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    Probably just your usual third world shithole political terrorism.