Bombings in Thailand Tourist Towns
Today, four have been killed and many more injured in a series of coordinated bombings across Thailand.
- The blasts have been concentrated on five tourist destinations: the resort town of Hua Hin near Bangkok (2 dead), Surat Thani (1 dead), Trang (1 dead), Phang Na, and Patong on the island of Phuket.
- No one has yet taken credit for these attacks.
- It is likely separatist insurgents who want the current military junta to be removed from power.
— AJ+ (@ajplus) August 12, 2016
Why has this happened?
The timing is sensitive.
It is a holiday weekend when people are celebrating Queen Sirikit’s 84th birthday. Hua Hin was likely chosen as a symbolic target because it is, apart from Bangkok, the king’s favorite residence.
The bombs come just days after a referendum which brought yet another new constitution to Thailand. This constitution is Thailand’s 20th in the past 90 years, and it strengthens the ruling junta’s power. Coups are also common, as there have been over a dozen since 1932. The most recent one brought Prayuth’s military junta to power in May of 2014. Since then, under Prayuth, the economy has weakened and people’s rights are being taken away.
The locations the bombers chose, tourist destinations, seems to indicate that their intent was to harm the important tourist sector of the Thai economy, and thus the junta.
— Stickboy Bangkok (@StickboyBangkok) August 12, 2016