At least 31 people have been killed in a gun and knife attack by a former police officer at a pre-school daycare centre in Thailand, police say.
Police say he killed himself and his family after a manhunt following the attack in Nong Bua Lamphu province.
Children and adults are among the casualties – police say the attacker shot and stabbed his victims before going on the run. A motive is unclear. Reports say the officer had recently been dismissed.
Police say he was last seen driving a white-four-door Toyota pick-up truck with Bangkok registration plates and named him Panya Kamrab.
A senior police officer in Nong Bua Lamphu province said 23 children were among the casualties, AFP news agency reports.
Mass shootings in Thailand are rare. In 2020 a soldier killed 21 people and injured dozens more in Nakhon Ratchasima.
The attack happened in the northeastern district of Nong Bua Lamphu on Thursday afternoon.
The gunman went on the run. He’s an ex-police officer, police confirmed
The Thai prime minister has ordered a massive manhunt.
Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha has expressed his deepest condolences to the victims’ families and described the shooting as a “shocking” event.
“My deepest condolences to the bereaved and injured families.”
He also ordered all emergency agencies to the scene in his Facebook message.
Three of the children killed were aged two, Reuters reports quoting a local police official.
More than 20 children died in the attack, reports say.