Monday, September 24, 2007

Restive Killings

Three persons shot dead in Thai south

Three persons, including a female teacher and a couple, were killed inside their own houses by militants Sunday night in Thailand's far southern province Pattani, media here reported Monday.

News network The Nation quoted police as saying that a temporary female teacher of Ban Pathung School, 24-year-old Yamairya Mali, was killed when an unknown number of gunmen bombarded her house in Pattani's Saiburi district with M16 rifles and an 11-mm pistol at 7 p.m. (1200GMT).

Also in Saiburi, Sagariya Malae, 39, and his wife, Saripah, 28, were killed in their house at 7:30 p.m.(1230GMT). They were shot by M16 rifles and 9-mm pistols by an unknown number of militants.

All the three victims were Muslims, police said.

Pattani, along with nearby provinces Yala and Narathiwat in Thailand's deep south has been troubled with a renewed round of insurgent violence since January 2004, which has killed over 2,400 people in the region.

Authorities blamed Malay-ethnic Muslim separatists for the violence. Security personnel, local officials, educators and civilians, more often of the region's minority residents Thai Buddhists, have fallen victim to almost daily roadside bombings and drive-by shootings.