Around 100 soldiers, police and bomb-disposal officers joined the raids after receiving a tip from local residents in the district that the sites in tambon Lalo were being used by insurgents from Runda Kumpulan Kecil. The group is one of a web of insurgent organisations believed to be behind many attacks in the restive South.
At one of the five places, on a rubber plantation, they seized a home-made bomb in a steel box weighing 11 kilograms, along with 15 other home-made bombs each weighing 0.5kg and suitable for throwing. They also seized a gas cylinder, fertiliser, petrol, nine batteries, electric wires and car paint. Tests revealed fingerprints from additional suspects on those bombs and materials.
Police believe the bombs and materials belonged to insurgents involved in a violent attack on a train in the region on November 18.
In related news, Pattani Governor Pramuk Lamun laid 12 royal wreaths on behalf of HM the King and other Royal Family members for Nanthana Kaeojan, 51, a school director who was shot dead by insurgents in Pattani on Thursday. She was the 154th educator killed in violence in the restive South. A royally sponsored cremation rite for Nanthana will be held this coming Thursday.
The Federation of Teachers in the Three Southern Border Provinces yesterday held a meeting to discuss security for teachers following Nanthana’s death. They agreed to meet with security agencies, governors and religious leaders to discuss the safety measures.