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Swede NATO officer dies in Phuket crash



Swede NATO officer dies in Phuket crash | Thaiger

PHUKET: A 48-year-old Swedish man who reportedly worked for NATO died in a motorbike accident on Phuket’s west coast early this morning.

Pol Capt Somnerk Dumkewa of Kamala Police told the Phuket Gazette that his officers received a call reporting the accident at about 2:30am.

At the scene, on the street leading to the Kamala Tambon Administration Organization (OrBorTor), officers found the man already dead lying near a red Honda motorbike.

His name is being withheld pending notification of next of kin.

Capt Somneuk said the man had suffered a severe head injury. “He was dead when we arrived,” he said.

Police at the scene found blood on a broken window of a house close to the edge of the road, Capt Somneuk said.

“We believe the man was traveling at speed when he failed to make the curve. He hit a house that is right beside the road. We found blood on the side of the house and on glass from a broken window [on the front of the house],” he said.

The man’s body was taken to Patong Hospital.

“The Swedish embassy was notified of the death this morning,” Capt Somnerk said.

A fellow officer at Kamala Police Station told the Gazette that police had been informed the man worked for NATO, but added that it was not confirmed what role the man fulfilled with the international peace-keeping organization.

The man’s death came less than three hours after the nationwide Seven Days of Danger road-safety campaign that concluded at midnight last night.

As such, the death is not included in the final tally of six deaths on Phuket’s roads for the new year holiday period.

* Since this report was posted the Swedish embassy in Bangkok has confirmed to the Phuket Gazette that Dr Mahmood Sultan Safi had been working in Afghanistan for a Swedish government organization, alongside the internationally renowned ‘Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders’ (MSF) international medical aid program. A consulate official also stated that Dr Safi, a naturalized Swede born in Kabul, had been on holiday in Phuket. His immediate family have been informed of his death.

— Atchaa Khamlo


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