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14 killed in southern Thailand attacks, several wounded

The attackers sprayed gunfire at the checkpoints and were trying to provoke unrest in the region

SNS | New Delhi |

At least 14 people were killed and several injured late on Tuesday in coordinated attacks that attributed to Southern Thailands Muslim insurgency, the military’s political arm said.

According to reports, an unknown number of assailants attacked two checkpoints in Yala province, five people were injured apart from those killed.

The attackers sprayed gunfire at the checkpoints and were trying to provoke unrest in the region. It described the toll of dead and injured as preliminary, reports further said.

The attacks are yet to be claimed by any of the rebel groups, as is usually the case in the region, Efe news reported.

PM Prayuth Chan-Ocha said, “We’ve received information about the incident and have begun investigating,”

Attacks and killings are common in the southern provinces of Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat despite the deployment of 40,000 security forces members and the impositions of states of emergency and martial law.

More than 7,000 people have been killed in the area since the Muslim separatist movement resumed its armed struggle in 2004 after a decade of relative calm, according to estimates of monitoring organization Deep South Watch.

Separatists in the southern provinces of Narathiwat, Yala, Pattani and Songkhla have fought for an independent state since Thailand formally annexed the autonomous Malay-Muslim sultanate in 1902.