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Deadly twin blasts hit southern town of Yala

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2010-05-26

Two successive bomb blasts hit the southern Thai town of Yala on Wednesday, killing at least two people and injuring dozens more. Police blamed suspected Islamic insurgents for the attacks.

AFP - Two bomb attacks in Thailand's insurgency-plagued south on Wednesday killed two people and wounded another 41, including five in a critical condition, police said.

The first blast went off in Yala, the main town in the province of the same name, at 10:15am (0315 GMT) in front of a car showroom, wounding eight people.

The second exploded nearby around ten minutes later, injuring rescue workers and police who had come to investigate the first attack, police said, blaming suspected Islamic insurgents for the bombings.

"Provincial authorities had been warned of the attack beforehand, but the warning was for May 28 to 30," said Krisada Boonrach, the Yala governor.

"Currently there is an 11-day provincial fair until June 5 and as security is strict in the town centre, the militants chose to attack in the outer part of town," he added.

More than 4,100 people have died during a six-year anti-government insurgency across the south, led by a shadowy mix of Islamist and separatist militants who never publicly state their goals.

Militias and security forces in the region have been accused of widespread abuses by rights groups.

The region was an autonomous Malay Muslim sultanate until it was annexed in 1902 by mainly Buddhist Thailand and tensions have bubbled there ever since, escalating into the current insurgency in January 2004.

Date created : 2010-05-26

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