Officials alerted to look out for IED wrapped in tree bark or hollowed-out log
Security forces in the troubled Deep South have been alerted to keep close watch on the movements of para rubber logs for fear that the separatists may hide improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in hollowed-out logs or may wrap the IEDs with tree barks.
The alert followed the accidental finding of an IED hidden in a hollowed-out rubber log by a log picker on January 17 in Yala’s Muang district.
Mr Prajob Promsuwan, a resident of Tambon Sateng in Muang district, and his wife drove a motorcycle with a side car to look for discarded logs to be used to make furniture. The couple found three logs and took them home.
After the three logs were unloaded from the side car of the motorbike and found a fire extinguisher stuffed inside one of the logs and quickly alerted the police. A team of bomb disposal police were rushed to his house to examine the fire extinguisher which was found to be stuffed with explosives and trigger device.
The 20-kg IED was later destroyed with a water cannon.
Police suspected that the separatists had wanted to use this camouflaged IED to attack security forces or officials tasked with ensuring safety travelling around Kwan Muang park.
Bomb disposal police that the new type of IED which was found in hollowed-out rubber log was indicative that the separatists were improvised in bomb making. Hence, security forces should be alerted so that they must tighten up monitoring of the movements of the logs in the province.
Colonel Kritapas Kruanate, commander of the bomb disposal unit or Anothai task force said that the IED was in functional condition and would go off once detonated with a mobile phone. He suspected that the bomb was meant to hurt patrolling officials.
A veteran bomb disposal policeman said that the same type of bomb found nine years ago but its size was much smaller than this latest one. This represented another step forward in bomb making by the separatist movement, he added.