At least 34 people have been killed in Thailand after a horrific shootout in a childcare center in the northwest of the country. According to reports, the gunman opened fire early in the afternoon in the center of the town of Nongbua Lamphu. Among those killed were 22 children, some of whom were as young as two-years-old.
Following the shooting, the assailant took his own life. A spokesperson for a regional public affairs office said 26 deaths have been confirmed so far - 23 children, two teachers, and one police officer.
The incident has left the South Asian nation, where gun violence is relatively rare, shocked. Mass shootings are a rarity in Thailand, despite the nation having a high gun ownership rate. However, there has been a spike in mass shootings around the world in the last few years, especially in the United States which has the highest number of gun violence incidents.
Texas school shooting, 2022
On May 24, a rampage at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, left 19 children and two teachers dead. The shooting occurred at Robb Elementary School and was carried out by 18-year-old student Salvadore Ramos.
As per a report in the Gun Violence Archive, there have been over 300 mass shootings in US in the year 2022 itself. There were 14 mass shootings over the long Fourth of July weekend this year including at a Fourth of July parade in Highland Park that left six dead and dozens injured.
In fact, not a single week has passed this year when there hasn't been a mass shooting incident in the US.
Florida school shooting, 2018
The shooting occurred at Stoneman Douglas High School on February 14, 2018, when a former student of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School entered the school, killed 17 people, and wounded 17 others.
Christchurch mass shooting, 2019
In what is one of the most fatal incidences of mass shootings in recent times, 51 people were killed in a terror attack in New Zealand in 2019 after a lone gunman opened fire in two mosques in Christchurch on March 14. The attack was carried out by 28-year-old Brenton Harrison Tarrant and was linked to a rise in white supremacy and alt-right politics in New Zealand.
Norway attack, 2011
At least 77 people were killed in twin attacks in Norway in July 2011 after a twin attack in Oslo including a bombing and a shooting massacre in a youth camp. The attack was carried out by Andres Breivik who claimed to be a self-styled anti-Muslim militant.
Las Vegas shooting, 2017
At least 61 people were killed and over 800 left injured after a 34-year-old gunman opened fire from a hotel room into a crowd of people attending a country music festival. Over 400 people were left with gunshot wounds after the incident. The gunman killed himself after that.
Kenya University attack, 2015
In what is considered one of the deadliest attacks in Kenya, gunmen stormed the Garissa University college in Kenya on April 2, 2015, killing 148 people. The attackers were part of a militant group named Al-Shabaab which is a spinoff of the Al-Quaeda. During the day long siege, the gunment held 8700 students hostage and killed those who identified as Christians.
Hanau shootings, 2020
On 19 February 2020, eleven people were killed and five others wounded in a terrorist shooting spree after a schizophrenic far-right extremist opened fire in two two shisha bars in Hanau, near Frankfurt, Germany. After the attacks, the gunman returned to his apartment, where he killed his mother and then committed suicide. The massacre was called an act of terrorism by the German Minister of Internal Affairs.
Nova Scotia, 2020
On April 18–19, 2020, Gabriel Wortman committed multiple shootings and set fires at 16 locations in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia, killing 22 people and injuring three others before he was shot and killed by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in Enfield.
Mass shootings are generally referred to as those incidents where four or more people excluding the shooter — are injured or killed.
(With inputs from PTI)