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Mystery bang mid-air explosion

22 of December 2011

The mysterious loud bangs heard near the Thai-Cambodian border in Si Sa Ket this morning were from an unidentified mid-air explosion, 2nd Army chief Lt Gen Thawatchai Samutsakhon on Thursday.

He said there three or four reports of loud bangs about 11am.

They occurred about 10,000 feet above tambon Sao Thongchai in Kantharalak district.

Metal debris was later found scattered over the area. No one was injured, Lt Gen Thawatchai said.

Two or three similar incidents had previously been reported in this area but the cause remained unknown. He did not believe the explosions indicated an attack by Cambodian troops.

The reports triggered panic in the communities in this border tambon as the villagers assumed it was another shelling by Cambodian artillery.

Shortly after the explosions were heard, a piece of metal about 1 metre long and half a metre wide was found in a field at Phumsarol Witthaya School, said Chokchai Saikaeo, president of tambon Sao Thongchai administration organisation.

The same school was hit by artillery fire during the fighting between Thai and Cambodian forces earlier this year.

Mr Chokchai also said several more bits of similarly burned yellowish metal were later found in nearby spots in the tambon.

Troops who went to investigate the reports said the metal debris could be from a satellite, reports said, but there was no confirmation.

According to, Russia’s troubled, toxic fuel-loaded Phobos-Grunt spacecraft, which is stuck in low-Earth orbit due to an engine failure rather than on its way to Mars, appears to be doomed, with small pieces of the wayward probe already falling to Earth. There was no confirmation that the incident in Si Sa Ket was linked to this.

The satellite was expected to fall back to Earth in January.

HM the King Bhumibol Adulyadej celebrated his 84th birthday today along with members of the royal family and a public audience in the Chakri hall at the Grand Palace today.

During his address to the nation, HM the King said that a sustainable water management system must be developed and that all sides must work together to assist those who have been affected by floods.

He also said that the military and government should aim to work towards national stability, which will come when people in the country are living well and harmoniously.

HM the King pointed out that it was the duty of all sides to work together to their full potential to alleviate factors that create hardship to people.

The King pointed out that people were suffering as a result of the floods and cooperation was needed to sort the problem by setting up a sustainable water management system.

“The [water] projects that I’ve had discussed are only suggestions, not orders. But if the projects are beneficial and cost-effective, then implement them if possible,” the King said.

He added that it was vital that conflict be excluded from the process, replaced by moral support. This would allow for the nation to achieve happiness and add to the stability of the nation.

HM the King also hoped that the continue on a prosperous path, while observing formalities that consisted of renewal of the oath of allegiance by members of the Royal Guard, along with addresses by other dignitaries, including the Prime Minister.

Following the event, the world’s longest serving monarch proceeded to return to Siriraj Hospital, where crowds lined the streets chanted “Long Live the King” as the royal motorcade passed.

HM the King has been rarely seen in public following his admission to hospital in September 2009.

The massive volume of water is flowing down to Bangkok and people should prepare for possible flooding, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinwatra said on Saturday morning.

In her “Yingluck government meets people” weekly radio talk show on radio stations under the supervision of the Public Relations Department nationwide this morning, Ms Yingluck told people that it would take about one month for the floodwater in Bangkok to recede.

She said and the government has implement measures to protect the capital’s important places such as the palaces, hospitals, state offices, airports and economic zones.

The government will ensure that all roads and expressways are opened for traffic and that the tapped-water production and power plants are well protected, she added.

The prime minister urged Bangkok people not to panic and prepare for possible flooding. She also called on all water related offices to join forces in fighting against the coming floodwater.

Ms Yingluck said in helping the flood victims, the government set up 1,743 evacuation centres in all flooded provinces. Altogether 113,369 flood affected people are residing at the temporary shelters now.

From Bangkokpost

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