Ankara condemns armed attack in Thailand

Ankara condemns armed attack in Thailand

Ankara condemns armed attack in Thailand

People leave condolences at the scene of a mass shooting at the Terminal 21 Korat shopping mall in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, on Feb. 10, 2020. (AP Photo)

Turkey on Feb. 9 condemned an armed attack in Thailand which killed scores of people.

"We are saddened to receive the news that many people lost their lives and injured at attacks that took place at a military barracks and a shopping mall on Feb. 8 in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand," the foreign ministry said in a statement.

"We express our deepest condolences to the loved ones of those who perished and wish a speedy recovery to the injured victims of these heinous acts. We share the grief of the Thai people," it added.

A soldier with a grudge gunned down 27 people and wounded 57 in Thailand's worst mass shooting before he was fatally shot inside a mall in the country's northeast on Sunday, officials said.

Officials said the soldier was angry over a financial dispute, first killing two people on a military base and then went on a far bloodier rampage Saturday, shooting as he drove to the mall where shoppers fled in terror.

It took police sharpshooters 16 hours to end the crisis.

Authorities said Sgt. Maj. Jakrapanth Thomma was behind the attack in Nakhon Ratchasima, a hub for Thailand's relatively poorer and rural northeastern region. Much of the shooting took place at Terminal 21 Korat, an airport-themed mall filled with colorful Lego sculptures, a merry-go-round and huge replicas of landmarks from around the world.

"This incident was unprecedented in Thailand,'' Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha told reporters as he gave the final tally on Feb. 9 morning after visiting the wounded in hospitals.

"I hope this is the only one and the last incident, and that it never happens again. No one wants this to happen. It could be because of this person's mental health in this particular moment,'' he said.