Bomb kills four in southern Thailand

Four people were killed and four injured in an overnight bomb attack at a checkpoint in the southern Thai province of Pattani, agencies report.

“The culprits placed a bomb under a chair at the checkpoint killing four people,” Police Colonel Tanongsak Wansupha said, commander of Pattani police. “This attack was to stir unrest.”

Two of the volunteers were killed instantly and two more died later in hospital.

Two soldiers were injured in another bombing on Friday morning in neighbouring Narathiwat province.

No group is claiming responsibility for the attacks.

The Muslim-majority provinces of Yala, Pattani and Narathiwat were part of the Sultanate of Pattani, a Thai vassal state, for hundreds of years.

In 1909, the region was divided between then-British Malaya and the Thai kingdom, in a treaty creating Thailand’s three southernmost states.

An insurgent movement to create an independent state in the region has resulted in around 6,200 fatalities since 2004.

It periodically spills into neighbouring Songkhla province, which is thronged with Malaysian tourists.

In August, a roadside bomb in Bacho district in Narathiwat killed a Thai soldier and injuring four others. A string of bombings hit Narathiwat and Songkhla in July and killed at least one person and injured more than a dozen people.

Thailand’s ruling junta, which seized power last May in a coup following months of anti-government protests, held several rounds of talks with rebels to end the conflict in the restive south.

Internal disagreement within both sides was blamed for the talks’ failure.


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