A major office was bombed in the insurgency-plagued Yala, Thailand, on Tuesday, March 17. According to the officials, a grenade and a car bomb were used to attack the government building which was supposed to conduct a meeting related to the spread of the Covid-19.
Since many local officials were invited to the meeting it was said that at least 20 were severely injured during the blast. The attack happened on the Southern Border Provinces Administration Centre in the capital city of Yala province, said Colonel Pramote Prom-in.
The Thai government body of SBPAC oversees Malay-Muslim majority provinces of Narathiwat, Pattani, and Yala were there have been reports of insurgents. Colonel Prom-in said that the first grenade was thrown at the building fence to draw the people out. Then a car bomb 10 meters away from the building went off after which a pickup truck also exploded.
The surveillance video of the attack
According to the police Col Naravee Binwae-arong of the Yala police station, the footage showed that the bomber was parked in front of the building in a pickup truck. The guards who noticed the truck told the people who had ran outside to not go close to the truck.
The authorities said that this was one of the common insurgent tactics were they lure the police and other personnel outside with one blast and attack with the second. Previously in November, a similar attack killed 15 security personnel in Yala.
The Thai government has been conducting several meetings with the insurgent groups to reduce the attack in the region. The meeting was being brokered by the country's neighbour, Malaysia. Since 2004 three of Thailand's southernmost provinces have been a target to insurgent groups. Estimates show that around 7,000 people have died because of the attacks launched by these groups.
According to analysts the attack on Tuesday was most probably conducted by the BRN insurgents. The number of people injured during the attack is unclear but local reports from Thailand say that around 25 people have been injured including five police and three local reporters. It was also said that there were no serious injuries so far.