PETALING JAYA: Melissa Lee shuddered to think what could have happened to her and her relatives had they hung around a little longer at the Siam Paragon Mall in Bangkok, the scene of a mass shooting tragedy on Tuesday.
The 35-year-old entrepreneur, who was in the Thai capital to attend a concert by British singer and songwriter Sam Smith that night, said she and her aunts and cousins narrowly missed the terrifying rampage as they had just left the premises before the gunman struck.
“I am forever grateful to God for keeping us all safe,” she said in a phone interview yesterday.
Lee said they had left the luxury mall after having their fill of Thai food, right before the shooting sent hundreds of panicked shoppers running into the streets in terror.
“Luckily, we decided to leave early, or else we might have been caught in the unfortunate situation,” she said.
Undeterred by the mishap, businessman Mohd Farouk Shauki said he will still proceed with his upcoming trip to Bangkok.
The 38-year-old from Kuala Lumpur said it was just an isolated incident.
“I have a short trip to Bangkok this Friday (tomorrow), but I won’t be cancelling it. I think it’s still safe to travel there,” he said.
The father of one, who has been to the city countless times, said he might take precaution by avoiding packed places.
“I will also constantly keep my close family members updated on my whereabouts when I am in Bangkok,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Malaysian Embassy in Bangkok will continue to monitor the situation closely despite there being no Malaysians involved in the incident at the popular shopping centre, said Wisma Putra.
In a statement, the Foreign Ministry confirmed that no Malaysians were involved in the shooting incident.
“The Malaysian Embassy in Bangkok will continue to closely engage with the local authorities to get the latest developments regarding the incident,” it said in a statement.
It added that Malaysians in Bangkok can contact the embassy directly should they require consular assistance.
Thai police have arrested the 14-year-old boy who allegedly opened fire at the packed Bangkok mall, leaving two people dead and five wounded.
The deceased are a 34-year-old female Chinese national and a Myanmar woman working at the mall.
Thailand’s Tourism Minister Sudawan Wangsuphakijkosol stressed that it was an isolated incident and that law enforcement agencies will tighten screening at shopping malls and other tourist spots.