Thailand blasts: A timeline of recent explosions in the kingdom

Police Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) official inspects the site of a bomb blast in Hua Hin, south of Bangkok.
Police Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) official inspects the site of a bomb blast in Hua Hin, south of Bangkok.PHOTO: REUTERS

BANGKOK (AFP) - A series of blasts have rocked several towns in Thailand, including the tourism hotspots of Hua Hin and Phuket, killing four people in the latest explosions in the South-east Asia's top tourist destination.

Small bomb attacks are common in Thailand during times of heightened political tension, but there have been few such incidents in the past year and it is rare for tourists - a key source of income for the kingdom - to be targeted.

Unrest is often attributed to disputes over business, local politics or criminal activities.

Bangkok has been hit by several explosions in recent years, including a blast at a shrine in an area popular among tourists that left 20 people dead almost one year ago, the deadliest attack in Thailand.

Thai officials said they are investigating the motives behind the latest explosions, which took place near the bar district in Hua Hin, popular among foreign and local tourists.

Here is a brief timeline of some blasts in Thailand in recent years.

2010

July: A suspected bomb rips through a bus stop in central Bangkok, leaving at least nine people injured and reigniting tensions two months after the end of opposition protests.

October: A blast at a Bangkok apartment complex kills four, with the government blaming the incident on the anti-government "Red Shirt" movement, which denies any involvement.

2011

December: A makeshift explosive device is found and defused near the government lottery office in the capital with authorities saying the perpetrators wanted to "challenge the government".

2012

February: A string of botched blasts across Bangkok injure several people in an alleged plot by Iranian suspects to kill Israeli diplomats. Two Iranian men, including one whose legs were blown off, were sentenced to between 15 years and life in 2013 over the failed plot.

2013

May: A homemade bomb hidden near rubbish bins in a busy suburban Bangkok shopping area explodes, injuring seven people.

2014

January: Twin blasts by unknown attackers at an anti-government protest in central Bangkok leave 28 injured.

February: A woman and a child are killed in a grenade attack during an anti-government rally in a Bangkok shopping district popular with tourists.

That same month, a grenade explosion also in a bustling Bangkok shopping district kills three people, including two children.

March: A string of grenade blasts rocks the northern Thai city of Chiang Mai, popular with foreign tourists, leaving four people wounded. Police say the attacks could be linked to the kingdom's deadly political crisis.

2015

February: Two small bombs explode near a popular shopping mall in downtown Bangkok, injuring one man.

April: A car bomb packed inside a pick-up truck on the Thai resort island of Samui wounds seven people, including an Italian girl.

August: An explosion rips through the Erawan shrine in downtown Bangkok killing 20 people, mainly ethnic Chinese tourists, in the deadliest such attack in the country in recent years.

2016

February: A car bomb detonates outside a police station in southern Thailand, injuring at least seven people.

August: Twin blasts in the seaside resort town of Hua Hin kill one Thai woman selling papaya and wound 21, including foreign tourists.