Over 17 killed as Thai soldier opens fire on citizens

A Thai soldier has killed at least 17 people and wounded more than 20 in a shooting rampage in the northeastern city of Nakhon Ratchasima, according to police.

The suspect of Saturday’s attack, identified by police as Sergeant Major Jakrapanth Thomma, remains at large.

The suspect reportedly stole an army vehicle and posted photos and video of himself in full tactical gear as the attack was carried out.

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He wrote on his Facebook page earlier in the day that “Death is inevitable for everyone”. The suspect also posted a picture of what appeared to be his hand holding a gun.

At one point after the shooting had begun, he wrote online, “Should I give up?” before his account became inaccessible.

The soldier opened fire at different locations in the city, which is more than 250km (155 miles) from capital, Bangkok, police spokesman Kissana Phathanacharoen said in a message sent to reporters.

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The shooter remained in a shopping centre and had not yet been apprehended, the police said.

“We don’t know why he did this. It appears he went mad,” said defence ministry spokesman Kongcheep Tantrawanit.

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