A roadside bombing on Friday, March 3rd, resulted in the fatality of two explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) officers and severe injuries to another in Thailand’s deep South province of Narathiwat.
The incident happened when a military convoy led by the deputy commander of the 4th Army Region was passing through a local road in the Si Sakhon district in the southern border province of Narathiwat when a roadside bomb exploded.
The blast was reported around 3:15 PM. The incident took place about 800 meters away from a military outpost, said Pol. Lt. Suparerk Chamroennusit, deputy investigation chief at the Sri Sakhon police station.
The explosion created a one-meter-deep and two-meter-wide crater on the road where a badly damaged Toyota Fortuner belonging to an EOD unit was found overturned about 30 meters away from the crater. Two officers were discovered deceased and trapped in the vehicle while another officer was found alive but also stuck in the same car.
Those who passed away were Maj Likhit Witthayapraparat and driver Sgt Maj First Class Issara Lerknok. The surviving officer Sgt Saksorn Sainam was rushed to a hospital.
Pol. Lt. Suparerk revealed that the attack targeted the military convoy of Maj. Gen. Paisarn Nusang, deputy commander of the 4th Army Region and deputy director of the 4th Region Forward Commander of the Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC).
One day earlier on Thursday, unidentified gunmen opened fire and threw grenades into the military outpost, but no casualties were reported. Maj. Gen. Paisarn and the EOD unit travelling in four vehicles subsequently to inspect the outpost and were blasted.
A preliminary probe found that the bomb was homemade, having been packed inside a cooking gas cylinder with a weight of no less than 50 kilograms. The authorities believed the explosion was planned by a violent insurgent group who may have been hiding high up in nearby mountains as of press time.