Updated: Injury toll continues to climb

11 04 2010

Update: Latest at Prachatai is 20 dead and 834 injured.

The Bangkok Post has a story on the deaths and injuries that begins with this telling comment: “It was unusual this morning that practically all free TV stations except Thai PBS did not report any news of the clashes last night.” Censorship continues as the Abhisit Vejjajiva government tries to control the way these events are portrayed, trying for a repeat of last year’s media triumph.

Then to the grim figures: “Bangkok Metropolitan Administration’s emergency medical centre ‘Erawan’ reported that 18 killed including 4 soldiers and 678 injured. [Reuters says 18 killed and more than 800 injured.] The patients are being treated in General, Hua Chiew, Mission, Phra Mongkutkhao and other hospitals.  The three hospitals nearest the clash site last night said that they could no longer accept more patients for treatment as their emergency wards were full. However, Phra Mongkutkhao hospital director said that the hospital could still accommodate more patients if needed as those who were wounded slightly could now go home.

It is interesting that when the Nation and the Post report on injuries they provide the number of soldiers injured even though the majority of killed and injured are civilians. The Nation reports “The government said troops fired rubber bullets and tear gas whereas demonstrators fought back with guns, grenades and petrol bombs.” There’s no evidence that this is an accurate assessment. The video and photos that PPT has seen – and we haven’t seen them all – do not indicate that The Nation is correct. Even the casualty figures suggest that it is a flawed assessment. It sounds like an attempt to cover for the government.


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