Friday, September 30, 2005

Thailand - 2 Chinese killed in Islamic insurgency

Two Chinese nationals have been killed in the continuing insurgency in southern Thailand, Xinhua News Agency has reported. They were shot in the head by gunmen riding on motorcycles in the province of Narathiwat. More than 800 have died in the Islamic led insurgency in the last 21 months according to the report. China has strong diplomatic ties with Thailand and the targeting of Chinese citizens is likely to be a reaction to Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s crackdown against militants, and its allies. A similar attack a year ago injured 2 Chinese citizens. The government has been criticized by villagers for a heavy handed approach to the Islamic violence according to the BBC, but the policy is likely to continue after the killing of 2 marines Wednesday prompted calls for a swift response against the militants. Thaksin was guarded as to what the possible response might be, saying only, “There is not going to be retaliation…there will have to be law enforcement.”
[15:36 GMT 30/09/2005]

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