Another Buddhist rubber tapper was seriously injured in the early hours of Thursday morning when he stepped on a landmine in Yala, becoming the fifth victim of attacks by Muslim insurgents since June 28 in this restive southern border province.
Police said Jarin Chanluek, 47, suffered severe cuts to his both legs and damage to his eyes in the explosion, which occurred around 3am at his rubber plantation in Yala’s Muang district.
Pol Capt Prachuap Suwanno, an officer with Muang Yala police station, said the explosion left a hole 50 cm wide and 50 cm deep.
Jarin’s wife, Sopha Chanluek, told police that her husband spotted a pile of leaves while tapping rubber trees and tried to kick them aside, triggering an explosion.
On June 28,Wiphawan Plodkaenthoing, 34, was injured when she stepped on a landmine at a plantation in Yaha district.
Chutipong Namwong, 48, was also injured by a landmine on Saturday at his plantation in Muang district, while on Monday, Suthin Haewkhunthod, 60, was injured when he stepped on a landmine inside his rubber plantation in Krong Penang district.
Then on Wednesday, Sukho Khamkaew, 46, was badly hurt while working in his rubber plantation in Bannang Sata district.
Yala police chief Pol Maj Gen Krissada Kaewchandee said on Wednesday that Malay-Muslim insurgents were deliberately targeting Thai Buddhists, noting that the four explosions had all occurred inside rubber plantations owned by Buddhists.