19 May 2024

Rioting inmates at Thailand’s Krabi provincial prison set fire at their sleeping quarters at about 5.30pm today (Friday), as health and security officials were trying to screen inmates with rapid antigen kits, prior to moving some to other prisons. The riot restarted today, after the first round yesterday.

Officials have, so far, managed to transfer about 400 inmates to other prisons, leaving about 1,700 still inside the prison compound, including the small group who allegedly set fire to their sleeping quarters. All of remaining inmates are scheduled to be moved to another prison nearby tonight.

About 14 inmates were injured by rubber bullets, fired by prison officials in their attempt to subdue the rioters. Security forces were on standby earlier today before receiving an order to storm the prison to put an end to the riot and to arrest the inmates involved. A drone was also used to observe the situation inside the prison.

Latest reports indicate the fire has now been extinguished and 31 core rioters have been detained. Officials are scheduled to inspect the damage tomorrow morning.

The first riot erupted at the prison last night, as several inmates protested against the handling of COVID-19 infections in the prison, demanding that the infected, most of whom are in mild conditions, be moved out of the prison.