Dozens of people have died in gunbattles between police and suspected Islamic militants in southern Thailand.
Latest reports say the death toll has risen to at least 93 in the worst day of violence in Thailand’s Muslim-dominated south in recent months.
The clashes were sparked by groups of militants launching near simultaneous attacks on police bases and checkpoints in several districts of Yala and Pattini provinces.
State-run Radio Thailand said the militants had first tried to rob weapons from storehouses at the outposts.
Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra confirrmed: “The purpose of the raid was to steal weapons from government security forces which would then have been sold.
“The attackers had only machetes and a few guns.”
He praised government forces which he said were well prepared for the attack.
The incident is the latest in a series of almost daily attacks by gunmen that have left a number of people dead this year. The government blames Islamic separatists.
Yala, Pattani and Narathiwat are the only Muslim majority provinces in predominantly Buddhist Thailand. Muslims have long complained of discrimination in jobs and education.
Source: Sky News