The first attack occurred at a T-junction in Thung Yang Daeng district of Pattani at 5pm, killing Pol Sen Sgt Maj Arun Kaewkor-iad, chief of Thung Yang Daeng Police Station’s crime suppression unit.
The officer was driving home in a car when he was followed by two men on a motorcycle. The pillion rider opened fire at him with an unknown weapon, killing him on the spot. The shooting also wounded a woman passerby who was riding a motorcycle.
The assailants then exchanged fire with a group of police officers led by Pattani chief Pol Maj Gen Phote Suaysuwan, who was inspecting the area at the time and came across the incident, but managed to elude arrest. Security officers have sealed off the area and are searching for the suspects.
At 5.40pm, gunmen shot dead Apiwat Chanthan, 53, a native of Yala, with assault rifles in Ban Sai Mor in Nong Chik district and stole his Mazda pickup truck. His friend, who narrowly escaped death, said he and Apiwat were searching for a place to fish when they were attacked.
The third attack took place in Narathiwat’s Rangae district at 6.30pm. Two defence volunteers were shot in the head at point blank range by two suspected militants mingling with the crowd at a local football match.
Police said the gunmen shot the pair, Kreeman Mayeng and Niraham Hayeesama-ae, with pistols after they watched the game and were preparing to leave on their motorcycles. The attackers took a .38 revolver from Kreeman before fleeing.