Three bomb explosions in southern Thailand kill 2

June 24th, 2011 - 10:03 pm ICT by BNO News  

NARATHIWAT, THAILAND (BNO NEWS) — A series of three bomb explosions in Thailand’s restive southern region killed at least two people and injured another 13, officials said Friday.

The bomb explosions occurred in the Bai district of Thailand’s southern Narathiwat Province, Police Colonel Nitinai Langyanai of Tak Bai Police Station told Thai News Agency MCOT.

The first explosion was a roadside bomb that detonated near a Royal Irrigation Department working site, where the provincial bomb squad found the bodies of two workers after arriving at the scene. Five others had been wounded, but local villagers were able to transport them to local hospitals.

Just one kilometer (less than a mile) from the first bomb, a homemade bomb reportedly weighing some 20 kilograms (44 pounds) and built out of a fire extinguisher detonated and wounded a Thai soldier who was taken to the Tak Bai Hospital. The bomb had been planted underground and according to initial investigations, was detonated through a cell phone.

As local authorities conducted investigations in the area of the second blast, a suspicious object with a radio antenna and electric wires was spotted. Expert teams confirmed it was a 5-kilogram (11 pound) bomb placed inside a metal box. A bomb squad tried to dispose the explosive device, but it suddenly detonated, injuring seven officials.

In January 2004, Muslim militants raided a military arms depot, killing five soldiers and making off with 350 semi-automatic rifles. After the raid, Thailand’s army launched a series of attacks on the separatists in the mainly Muslim deep South.

Separatist groups in the southern regions, which are for a majority Muslim, have brought constant and violent uprisings in the region for the past 6 years. Over 4,300 people have died and more than 7,000 others have been injured during this period.

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