Bangkok blast toll rises to 21, Hong Kong tourists among dead

The death toll from a bomb blast in the Thai capital rose to 21 on Tuesday with 123 wounded, police said, with two Hong Kong tourists among those killed in the attack on a popular religious shrine.

"The death toll is now 21," police spokesman Prawut Thavornsiri told AFP, adding 123 people were wounded.

"The bomb aimed at killing as many people as possible as the shrine is crowded at around 6 to 7 pm," he said of the Monday evening attack.

Authorities said earlier that the blast at the Erawan shrine in downtown Bangkok killed 10 Thais as well as at least one Chinese national and a Filipino citizen. The nationalities of the other people who died were not immediately clear.

Hong Kong's immigration department said Tuesday that it had "confirmed that two Hong Kong residents deceased in the incident" with six others injured and sent to hospital for treatment.

China's official Xinhua news agency said Monday that two Chinese nationals had died, while the governments of Singapore and Taiwan reported that some of their citizens were injured.

The attack drew quick expressions of grief from around the world, with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's office releasing a statement saying he was shocked.

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