Two more killed in southern Thailand sectarian attacks

AP , Bangkok

Mon, Jul 12, 2004 - Page 5

Suspected Islamic insurgents shot and killed two men and injured another in separate attacks overnight and yesterday in Thailand's Muslim south, police said.

The attacks occurred in provinces about 1,000km from Bangkok, where police have mounted a massive security blanket for the International AIDS Conference beginning later yesterday.

The killings occurred on the last day of an army deadline for militants to surrender or face military tribunals. At least 260 youths have surrendered so far and are being held at an army camp.

Officials say those found to have committed minor crimes will be rehabilitated and sent back to their families, and others will be handed over to the police.

At least 311 people -- mostly police officers and local officials -- have been killed since January in the violence blamed on Islamic guerrillas, who want the Muslim-dominated provinces to separate from Thailand.