Friday, June 17, 2011

Four soldiers were killed and two wounded in separate attacks in southern Thailand

Four soldiers were killed in an ambush and two others wounded in separate attacks carried out by guerrillas of the Islamic separatist movement in southern Thailand, police sources said today. The soldiers were shot at close range by rebels while on patrol Thursday a food market in Pattani, capital of the province of the same name and located a thousand kilometers from Bangkok, said the provincial police station.

After firing on the soldiers, the attackers seized their weapons and fled in two cars that were waiting for them. In another incident in nearby Yala province bordering Malaysia, two people, one of them police, were seriously injured by exploding a homemade bomb with two kilos of explosives placed near a public school and was operated by remote control.

Small-arms attacks, assassinations and bombings occur almost daily in the Muslim provinces of Pattani, Narathiwat and Yala, despite the deployment of 31,000 officials of the security forces and that is in effect a state of emergency. Nearly four thousand 500 people have died in violence in southern Thailand since the 2004 Islamic separatist movement resumed armed struggle.

The insurgents denounce the discrimination faced by the country's Buddhist majority and require the creation of an Islamic state that integrates these three provinces, which made up the former sultanate of Pattani, annexed by Thailand a century ago.

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