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Attack kills 15 at southern Thailand security post

Officials said the assailants took several weapons from the checkpoints, including an M16 rifle and three shotguns.

Police secure the road leading to a shooting scene in Yala province, Thailand (Sumeth Panpetch/AP)
Police secure the road leading to a shooting scene in Yala province, Thailand (Sumeth Panpetch/AP)

By Associated Press Reporter

Gunmen have fired at security personnel at checkpoints in Thailand, killing 15 volunteer officers and wounding five others.

An army spokesman said some of the attackers may have been injured in an exchange of gunfire during the attack late on Tuesday night.

Officials said the assailants took several weapons from the checkpoints, including an M16 rifle and three shotguns.

A Muslim separatist insurgency has left about 7,000 people dead since 2004 in Thailand’s three southernmost provinces of Pattani, Narathiwat and Yala. Police, teachers and other government representatives are often targets of the violence.

Four of the officers who were killed were women and one was a doctor.

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Thai police secure the road leading to the shooting scene (AP/Sumeth Panpetch)

Thailand’s volunteer security forces in the country’s south receive weapons training from the army but no salary. They are usually issued shotguns but also often carry personal handguns.

Police said nails had been scattered on a highway to disable vehicles entering Yala.

A small explosive was found placed near an electrical pole to knock out power, and several burning tyres were left at a school.

PA

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