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At least two people were killed and 16 wounded by a rash of small bombs in Thailand's rebellious Muslim south on Thursday, attacks the government said security forces knew were planned but failed to prevent.
At least 41 bombs exploded at police stations, checkpoints and government offices in the southernmost provinces of Narathiwat, Pattani and Yala, where more than 1,300 people have been killed in two years of separatist insurgency.
Officials said they expected more attacks.
"There will be more small bombs like what we had today as our intelligence reports say more than 200 small bombs were smuggled across the border into the region in the past four or five days," Narathiwat Governor Pracha Taerat told Reuters.
The region was part of the ancient Kingdom of Pattani, and was a semi-autonomous Malay region, before being annexed by Thailand in 1902. The indigenous people speak their own language, Jawi, a Malay dialect, and probably have more in common with their Malaysian neighbours than their Thai compatriots.
Armed separatist groups were active in the area from the 1960s, but when the national government implemented political and economic reforms in the 1980s popular support for the insurgency waned. Hundreds of separatist fighters accepted a broad amnesty and the movement looked to be quashed by the mid-90s.
A recent report by the ICG, "Southern Thailand: Insurgency, Not Jihad", concludes the unrest stems from a century of discrimination and assimilation policies by successive national governments in Bangkok
Originally posted by hingus
i think this have gotta do something with 'Kra Isthmus Canal that would cut across the Kra Isthmus in southern Thailand and enable shipping to bypass the Strait of Malacca and head directly into the South China Sea (and vice versa)'.
if this project goes thru, imagine what will happen to the shipping ports in singapore which is regarded as the 2nd largest shipping facility in the world.