BANGKOK, 19 January 2014 Official investigations showed that the grenade thrown into anti-government protesters while marching on Banthat Thong Road was thrown by someone among the rally goers. The Centre for the Administration of Peace and Oder (CAPO) said its conclusion was based on footages from the area, leading to an assumption that the blast was done by an ill-intentioned third party disguising themselves as rally goers.
The explosion on Banthat Thong road on January 17 led to one death and more than 30 injured.
Deputy Chief of the Metropolitan Police Bureau, Police Major General Adul Narongsak, stated that based on the collected evidence, footages, and interviews, the police have come up with several observations.
First, BB guns that were found inside a nearby building could not possibly be used for the attack as its range is too far from the site itself. Second, police were prevented by protesters from getting to the scene right away to collect necessary evidence making it a lot more difficult for the police to effectively determine the cause of the blast.
Third, the assumption that the grenade was thrown from the nearby building is quite impossible due to many obstacles such as branches or electrical wires surrounding the site.
Lastly, based on footages from CCTV cameras and reporters in the area, there were several men within the rally procession itself who had shown suspicious behaviors.
According to Police Major General Adul, a suspicious man with a white cap was walking from the back of the protest rally before running away after the blast. A pickup driver next to the blast also ran to join the man with the white cap, while 2 other men picked up something from the ground without paying attention to the injured who were lying around at the time. The police believed that the attack was done by those who disguised themselves among the protesters.
Deputy Prime Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul, in his capacity as CAPO’s Director, concluded that the incident was aimed at hurting protesters rather than the protest leaders.