PHOTO: Rescue workers take the bodies of two killed suspected insurgents to a hospital morgue
Two suspected insurgents have been killed in a firefight with army rangers at a checkpoint in Pattani in Southern Thailand.
The clash occurred around 12.40am and followed a bomb explosion earlier in the night near a police station.Southern insurgents also attacked on an army outpost in Yarang district of Pattani.
The two men were travelling on a motorcycle when rangers manning a checkpoint signaled them to pull over.The motorcycle rider turned back to get away and the pillion rider fired shots at the rangers. The army rangers then returned fire, an official told the Bangkok Post.
The two men planted the roadside bomb
Another team of rangers was deployed to the scene and found a suspicious package a little way down the road.
Bomb disposal officers called in to inspect it reported it was was a homemade bomb weighing around 30kg. The bomb squad destroyed it.
Authorities believed the two motorcyclists had planted the roadside bomb, targeting security forces. After placing it they had encountered the rangers manning the checkpoint along their escape route.
Relatives of the dead men arrived to collect their bodies at Pattani Hospital on Friday morning. The suspected insurgents were identified as Lukman Salae, 34, of Pattani’s Mai Kaen district, and Amran Bueraheng, 38, of Sai Buri district.
Pol Col Abdulrochak Lormae, acting Mae Kaen police chief, said a car bomb was detonated near the old Mai Kaen police station and housing compound around 10pm on Thursday. Nobody was injured.
The car had also been reported stolen from tambon Thung Yang Daeng in Pattani.
Around 10.30pm, armed men riding on two pickup trucks fired on a military outpost in tambon Khao Tum of Yarang district. There were no injuries, but the garage was shot-up
Police also blamed insurgents intent on stirring unrest in the far South.