Security alert over Thai violence

PM calls urgent security meeting after attacks leave 10 dead and scores injured.

    Sunday's bombings hit hotels and karaoke parlours among other targets across the south [EPA]

    Colonel Wichai Thongdaeng, a military spokesman, said extra security forces had been deployed across the region amid warnings that more attacks are possible.
    "We believe that the attacks were planned to cause division, create fear among the people"

    Colonel Wichai Thongdaeng,  military spokesman

    Both the shootings and the bomb attacks are being blamed on Muslim fighters.
    Wichai said it was difficult to prevent further attacks as "we don't know where the rebels will strike".
    "We believe that the attacks were planned to cause division, create fear among the people. They want to show that they are still capable (of carrying out attacks)," he said.
    The latest violence came just two days after Surayud
    Chulanont, the Thai prime minister, said his military-installed government wanted to hold talks with Muslim fighters.
    Sunday’s bomb attacks were spread across the four Muslim-majority provinces in Thailand’s south.
    In Yala province at least nine explosions left two people dead and 33 injured.
    Another person died and others 20 were wounded in a town in Narathiwat province.
    Five bombs exploded in the frontier town of Sungai Golok, a popular destination for Malaysian and Singaporean tourists, while another seven blasts occurred in the border town of Betong.
    Two explosions each were reported in Songkhla province and Pattani.
    Military officials said they had received reports of other incidents including the torching of public schools, ambushes and other attacks.
    Areas of Pattani town suffered electricity blackouts and a breakdown in communication lines as a result of the bombings.
    More than 2,000 people have died in attacks in Thailand’s south since violence first erupted in 2004.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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