BANKGKOK, February 9. /TASS/. At least 21 people were killed and 33 injured when a soldier opened fire at a shopping mall in the northeastern Thai city of Nakhon Ratchasima, Thai Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul told reporters on Sunday.
Speaking to reporters in front of the Terminal 21 shopping mall, where the gunman is still holed up, Anutin tasked health authorities with putting medical crews on alert and making sure that hospitals have enough donor blood for transfusions.
On Saturday, Sgt Maj Jakrapanth Thomma, 32, shot dead his commander and two other people at a military camp before getting away in a stolen car. The soldier was firing at passers-by randomly on his way to the Terminal 21 shopping mall. Continuing shooting inside the mall, he took 16 people hostage. The Khao Sod newspaper reported later that the hostage situation "appears to have been resolved."
So far, law enforcement officers have made several attempts to stop the gunman, but failed. The Thai Health Ministry confirmed earlier in the day that one police officer was killed and two injured during the most recent operation to neutralize the attacker.
Early on Sunday, Reuters reported, citing eyewitnesses, that shots and a series of blasts were heard in the building.