19 August 2015
The bomb blasts in Bangkok have resurrected more fears of widespread violence erupting the city. What do these blasts signify for the political climate of the Kingdom?
While Thai authorities scramble to get to the bottom of this week’s twin bomb blasts in the heart of Bangkok, they reflect a trend emerging from the series of violent attacks in Thailand the past 18 months. A total of over 20 bomb explosions were reported between March 2014 and August 2015, including before, during and after the 2014 coup. On 17 February 2015, terrorists exploded a bomb on a Thai registered ship in Malaysian waters; another bomb exploded in Narathiwat Province on 20 February; and, a car bomb exploded on the tourist island of Koh Samui in April.
The series of bomb explosions indicate similarities of tactics, target choices as well as bomb components. All the bombs were home-made and weighed no more than four kilograms. All the perpetrators escaped. And no one came forward to claim responsibility. Those explosions were probably merely training for the latest Bangkok blasts. Clearly, a new set of bombers is developing even as we witness a fresh round of political violence in the Kingdom.
… Antonio L. Rappa is a Fellow at the Institute for Strategic and International Studies (ISIS) Chulalongkorn University, Thailand and Associate Professor and Head, Management and Security Studies, School of Business, SIM University. He was previously a Senior Fellow with the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
RSIS / Online
Last updated on 20/08/2015