Following the fatal shooting incident at the Siam Paragon Mall yesterday, Thai authorities stepped up their investigation and security measures. The event saw a 14 year old boy open fire, causing the death of a tourist and injuring others.
The shopping centre resumed normal operations today, despite the previous day’s tragedy. However, some stores, particularly leading clothes brands, that suffered damage have temporarily closed for repairs.
A store official noted that apart from shattered glass, the establishment also had bullet marks on its walls. While the store will be closed for a day for maintenance, tourists continue to frequent the mall. However, the number of visitors is noticeably fewer than usual, and some stores remain closed, particularly those on the M floor.
Several tourists shared that they had been at the mall before the incident, leaving an hour before the occurrence. Despite the alarming incident, they continued with their regular activities the next day.
They noted a noticeable reduction in the number of tourists within the mall and several closed stores. They expressed safety concerns and called on relevant authorities to intensify measures, particularly regarding firearm accessibility to young individuals.
Sudarawang Subhakitkoson, Minister of Tourism and Sports, and Jakrapong Sangmani, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, visited the incident scene.
They commended the security personnel at the mall for their swift evacuation. After the incident, plain-clothed police officers have been patrolling with tourists for security maintenance. The frequency of scanning tourists entering the mall has also increased.
The ministers have discussed the Siam Paragon shooting with the Chinese embassy, given the impact on tourists’ perceptions. While it remains to be seen if tourist numbers will drop, the officials assured that the country has always prioritised safety.
They aim to communicate and build understanding among Chinese tourists and other nationalities, as well as Thais, to regain confidence.
Reportedly, the police are collecting further evidence from the incident scene on the M floor of the mall.
In a poignant gesture, some foreign tourists have placed white flowers at the front of the area to mourn the deceased involved in the incident.
As the investigation continues, the family of the Chinese woman, who was a young mother of twins, and the Myanmar relatives have arrived to claim the bodies of the deceased, reported KhaoSod.
Thai police announced five heavy charges against the 14 year old perpetrator and are preparing to take him to court. The parents may also face charges.
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