Saturday, March 31, 2012
Terror rocks three provinces in one day
Car bombs exploded in three provinces today -- Yala, Hat Yai of Songkhla and Pattani with heavy casualties. All signs pointed to terror-related activities. At least ten died in Yala where multiple explosions hit the central area of the town. Five were killed in Hat Yai and over 300 injured when a bomb rocked the parking lot under the centrally-located Lee Gardens hotel right in the heart of this commercial centre. Another southern province, Pattani, also experienced an explosion. No casualties were reported from there.
In Hat Yai, the local mayor confirmed this evening that a bomb had been planted although the local governor said it had yet to be determined whether it was an act of terrorism. Earlier reports had suggested that a gas leak had caused the accident.
The three major incidents in the southern provinces underline the urgency of the security situation in the South, demanding prompt and a comprehensive review of the current measures in the country's most sensitive area. The devastating bombings show that despite all the talk about "successful" official work in the south, the government cannot claim to be in control of the situation.