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Men Sought by Thai Police Following Deadly Bombing in Bangkok Turn Themselves in, Deny Involvement

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Thai soldiers inspect the scene after a bomb exploded outside a religious shrine in central Bangkok late on August 17, 2015 killing at least 20 people and wounding scores more. Body parts were scattered across the street after the explosion outside the Erawan Shrine in the downtown Chidlom district of the Thai capital. AFP PHOTO / PORNCHAI KITTIWONGSAKUL (Photo credit should read PORNCHAI KITTIWONGSAKUL/AFP/Getty Images)

Breaking update:

Two men sought by Thai police in connection with the deadly shrine bombing in Bangkok have turned themselves in to authorities, a police spokesman tells CNN. The two men were seen in a surveillance video, shot at the shrine prior to the bombing, wearing a white shirt and a red shirt, Col. Decha Promsuwan, a police official in Bangkok, said. The two men denied having any link to the alleged bomber, Promsuwan said. The men were taken to Metro Police headquarters for further interrogation, Promsuwan said.

Original post:

At least 10 people may have been involved in the deadly bombing at a Bangkok shrine, but the attack is unlikely to be linked to international terrorist groups, Thai authorities say.

Police have singled out one main suspect in the blast, describing him as an unidentified foreigner who was caught on surveillance video hiding a backpack under a bench at the shrine minutes before the bomb detonated.

They are also looking for two other men spotted in footage from the scene who they say could have been working with the chief suspect.

Royal Thai Police Commissioner Gen. Somyot Poompanmoung said Thursday he believes “several teams” were involved in the preparation and execution of the attack, which killed at least 20 people and wounded more than 120.

“This operation was carried out by a big network,” he said.

“There must be a preparation for materials and explosives,” Somyot explained. “There must be people who scout the route. There must be people who survey the site, people who would cover and look after the bomber. There must be people who know escape route and take the bomber to do it.”

Even though police say at least one foreigner may have been involved in the attack, the operation is unlikely to be linked to international terrorism, Col. Winthai Suvaree, a spokesman for Thailand’s ruling military junta said Thursday.

There has been no claim of responsibility for the bombing. Thai authorities haven’t said what they think the motive for it might have been, other than making vague references to unspecified people or groups who want to hurt Thailand’s tourism industry and economy.

Information shared with Interpol

Thai security forces are sharing information with Interpol, the global police organization, and with intelligence agencies from allied countries, officials said.

At this point, they don’t know if the main suspect is still in Thailand, said police spokesman Lt. Gen. Prawut Thavornsiri.

He said investigators are reviewing surveillance video from Bangkok’s two international airports, as well as from the scene of the bombing.

Police have released a sketch of the suspect, showing a dark-haired man with glasses and light facial hair. They have also offered a reward of 1 million Thai baht ($28,000) for information leading to his arrest.

A Thai motorbike taxi driver who believes he picked up the suspect shortly after the blast said he did not seem to be Thai.

Driver Kasem Pooksuwan told CNN the man didn’t speak to him at all but showed him a piece of paper with the name of a central city park written in English. He spoke an unfamiliar language on his cell phone during the short ride, he said.

“When I dropped him, he still appeared very calm, just like (a) normal customer. He seemed not in a hurry at all,” Kasem told CNN.

Police say they have questioned the motorcycle taxi driver but haven’t provided details of what he told them.