Blasts in Bangkok signal renewed political tensions

World Today

Concerns in Thailand grow after a bombing on Sunday night at a Bangkok shopping could indicate a return of political violence in the kingdom. CCTV’s Tony Cheng reported this story from Bangkok.

Blasts in Bangkok signal renewed political tensions

Concerns in Thailand grow after a bombing on Sunday night at a Bangkok shopping could indicate a return of political violence in the kingdom. CCTV’s Tony Cheng reported this story from Bangkok.

The bombs exploded 8 p.m. outside the Paragorn shopping center, one of the largest in Southeast Asia. Only one person was slightly injured, but the intention of the attacks appears to have been psychological.

Initially police blamed the blasts on a faulty power transformer, but they later conceded that small bombs were placed and timed to cause panic and fear.

During a press briefing on Monday, police said they had few leads.

Many said they weren’t surprised that violence has broken out again.

“We have been monitoring the situation since the new year, because we had information there might be terrorists attacks. It was quiet until now, but we need more time to investigate,” police spokesman Prawut Thavornsari said.

Thailand has been relatively quiet since the military coup, but last week’s impeachment of former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra has led to increased tensions.

Promises of reconciliation from the military government are increasingly implausible and red shirts (supporters of the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship) are publicly starting to question their quiet submission to military rule.

The international community has condemned the ongoing imposition of martial law and this attack would seem to give the army justification for their rule.

Despite close monitoring all over this area, the bombs were placed outside the view of security cameras which showed two suspects caught on tape, but their identities were well concealed.