There have been a series of explosions in Thailand’s troubled southern provinces. In Yala yesterday, three co-ordinated bombs were detonated within minutes of each other in the downtown area of Yala city with at least 9 people killed and approximately 100 injured. The explosives had been placed on two motorbikes and one pick-up truck. In another incident in neighbouring Pattani province, a policeman was injured by a bomb placed on a motorbike. The terrorist attacks are believed to have been carried out by Muslim insurgents as part of an ongoing campaign which continues to bring death and mayhem to Thailand’s Deep South.
There was also an explosion at a hotel in the city of Hat Yai in Songkhla province yesterday although it is still unclear whether this is related to the other incidents. An explosion took place in the basement of the Lee Gardens Plaza Hotel in central Hat Yai. The resulting fire engulfed the hotel with 5 reported deaths and dozens injured. Initial reports suggested the hotel explosion may have been caused by a gas leak, but more recent announcements by Thai police are suggesting a car bomb was the cause.
Since the insurgency in the Deep South of Thailand flared again in 2004, an estimated 5,000 people have been killed in the violence.