BANGKOK, Nov 8 – Thailand has no plans to impose a curfew in the country’s southern provinces after Tuesday’s attack by an armed group which killed 15 people.
Lt. Col. Pramote Prom-in of the Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC) Region 4 said security and law enforcement in Yala are still sufficient.
Yala is one of three provinces in the region often hit by violence.
“At present, we have received good cooperation from the locals on the ground…I would like to confirm that ISOC Region 4 has no reason to impose a curfew in the area to limit the people’s rights and freedom,” he said at a media conference here today.
On Tuesday night, the armed group stormed a security checkpoint in Yala province, killing 15 people, including village defence volunteers and police officers, and injuring four others. Some of the injured remain in critical condition.
These volunteers are usually civilians who have been trained to use weapons and are tasked with protecting the village.
The attackers used explosives and then scattered nails on the roads in an attempt to slow down people chasing them.
It was the worst single attack in southern Thailand in recent years.
Pramote said police had arrested a suspect but he denied involvement in the attack.
“At least 12 individuals mounted the attack. However, we believe 30 to 40 people were involved, including those who provided assistance for staging the attack.
“We believe the group is active in Mueng District of Yala and linked to Khok Pho District in Pattani and four other districts in Songkhla,” he said.
Pramote warned the locals and villagers not to provide assistance to the perpetrators.
“Based on evidence at the crime scene, the police believe some of the suspects were injured in the exchange of gunfire on Tuesday night. They may be hiding in places not far away.
“So, please inform the authorities if you know of any suspicious persons in houses or medical care units,” he said.
Meanwhile, Head of Provincial Police Region 9, Pol Lt Gen Ronnasil Phusara, said at least 40 firearms were used in Tuesday’s attack.