The Nation



Separatist group prime suspect in attack on

THAI AUTHORITIES believe a group led by Afandi Kapa from the Runda Kumpulan Kecil (RKK) separatist movement was involved in Monday's shooting that killed three brothers aged 6, 9 and 11 and injured their father Jehmu Maman and mother Padila in Narathiwat's Bacho district.

Captain Boonkerd Mullakan, a deputy chief of the Chulabhorn Marine camp in Narathiwat's Muang district, said that Jehmu, a former insurgency sympathiser, had been arrested before and he had given some useful testimony, which had led to the arrests of many suspected insurgents in the area.

Boonkerd said this was probably the reason that the insurgents attacked the family, and then framed state officials as having carried out the attack.

The attack could also be an attempt to threaten sympathisers who cooperated with Thai authorities.

He said Afandi's group, operating in Bacho and Pattani's Sai Buri and Mai Kaen districts, was suspected of carrying out this attack because Afandi and five others were reportedly spotted in the nearby Mai Kaen district earlier. The authorities are now gathering evidence to secure arrest warrants for them, he added.

Meanwhile, Col Pramote Prom-in, spokesman of the Internal Security Operations Command Area 4, Wednesday said there were "pre-meditated" attempts by sympathisers to spread a rumour that state officers, the police and the Army, had carried out the attack on this family.

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