Bomb kills father, daughter in front of school in south Thailand
A bomb has exploded in front of an elementary school in Thailand’s insurgency-riddled south, killing a four-year old girl and her father, police say.
The explosion occurred in front of the school in the Thai-Malaysia border town of Tak Bai in Narathiwat Province, as parents were dropping off their children early Tuesday morning, said police Lieutenant Col. Noppadon Kingthong.
The bomb was hidden in the fuel tank of a motorcycle that was parked opposite the school entrance.
Eight people were wounded, among them security forces, Noppadon said.
Army spokesman Yuthanam Petchmuang said that they suspect the bombing “to be the work of people who want to destabilize the situation and cause chaos.”
Another army official in south, Colonel Pramote Prom-in, said, “The bomb is an attempt by militants to incite unrest and aimed to kill… indiscriminately as shown by the four-year-old victim.”
A string of bomb attacks hit the country’s tourist resort towns less than one month ago, killing four people and injuring dozens of others.
Police said the bombings were related to the insurgency gripping southern Thailand and arrested a suspect in connection with the attacks.
Three provinces in southern Thailand, namely Yala, Pattani and Narathiwat, have faced an insurgency since 2004. According to Deep South Watch, which monitors the conflict, more than 6,500 people have so far been killed in the three Provinces.
Rebels fighting for greater autonomy often target perceived collaborators with the Thai government. Muslims and Buddhist civilians have fallen victim to their near-daily shootings or bomb attacks.