Accessibility links

Bomb Kills 2 Policemen in Thailand

Thai bomb squad members and soldiers inspect the site of a failed bomb attack blamed by police on separatist insurgents in the Sungaipadi distrist of Thailand's restive southern province of Narathiwat, 1 Jan 2011

Two bomb disposal policemen were killed in Thailand Saturday when a suspected explosive they were trying to defuse was detonated by a mobile phone.

Authorities said that at least eight people, including four other officers, were wounded in the blast at an open market in Thailand's violence-wracked southern province of Narathiwat.

Police said the owner of a vegetable stall alerted authorities about a suspicious motorcycle that two teenagers parked nearby. Police cleared most people from the area, but a bomb hidden in the motorcycle exploded as police tried to disarm it.

Officials said Islamic insurgents had threatened New Year's violence as part of a years-long campaign against Thai authorities.

Majority-Muslim southern Thailand has been the scene of persistent violence since early 2004, when Muslim militants raided a weapons depot and escaped with 300 rifles. More than 4,000 people have been killed since then, both Muslims and Buddhists.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.