Buddhist monks comfort each other as family of another monk grieve over his body in a hospital in the troubled southern province of Pattani March 5, 2011. Gunmen killed a Buddhist monk and wounded two others as they were collecting alms in Pattani. — PHOTO: REUTERS

THAILAND – VIOLENCE flared up in the deep South on Sunday, leaving a retired policeman and a monk dead and many people wounded. In Pattani’s Yarang district, masked men on three motorcycles opened fire at people shopping for food or working out on a local road in the morning.

Police Sgt Sanan Sangkasunya, 64, succumbed to his injuries at a local hospital while the other four victims, including Muhammad Isris Pathan, 18, were seriously hurt.

Mr Muhammad’s father Yula said the insurgents should not have attacked the general public.

In Pattani’s Panare district, two men shot a man and his mother while they were travelling on their motorcycle.

Nattakorn Jantip, 23, was killed instantly but his mother was not hit. She just sustained minor injuries from falling off the bike.

In Pattani’s Khok Pho district, a 32-year-old soldier was shot and seriously wound while on patrol. Almost at the same time, unknown men launched an M79 grenade at a checkpoint on 418 Pattani-Yala Road then opened fire. After three minutes of fierce exchange, the attackers withdrew. No one was wounded.

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