5 cops hurt in Songkhla bomb blast
Blast goes off just hours before Ramadan starts
Five police officers sustained injuries in a bombing attack carried out late on Sunday while they were inspecting the scene a shooting at a house owned by a village head assistant in Songkhla’s Thepha district the same night, police said.
The unnamed patrol officers were rushed to a nearby hospital after the bomb went off at 11.55pm, said Pol Col Kissana Phathanacharoen, deputy spokesman of the Royal Thai Police, yesterday.
The injured officers were called to the scene of the shooting at the house of Amnuay Yotkaeo, 49, a village head assistant of Moo 10 village in tambon Tha Muang, which reportedly occurred about 10.40pm.
The attack came just hours before this year’s Ramadan fasting month began in the early hours of yesterday, which prompted security in the deep South to be heightened, said Pol Col Kissana.
More security checkpoints were therefore ordered to be set up on main and minor roads while security patrol was ordered to be conduct more frequently in major business districts and communities to boost public confidence, he said.
During the Muslim holy month, two hours before the post-fast breaking feasts after sunset every day is usually a period when local markets are crowded with shoppers buying food for the feasts.
The Bangkok Post carried out a survey on Thep Wiwat market in Pattani’s Muang district on the first day of Ramadan and found that there weren’t as many shoppers as expected.
Most of the people found shopping at this major market of Pattani were Myanmar migrant workers.
Several vendors at the market said they believed the higher prices of products this year were to blame for a decline in the number of shoppers.
Je Jun, a vegetable vendor who has been working at the market for decades, said trade at the market during this year’s Ramadan appeared to be quieter than in past years.
She blamed this on the poor economic situation and the high prices of consumer products.