Two suspected Muslim insurgents dressed in college student uniforms fatally shot a policeman Friday in violence-plagued southern Thailand, police said. Police Sgt. Sophon Maijan, 53, an officer in Yala province, was riding his motorcycle to work when he was shot three times by a gunman on the back of another motorcycle, said police Lt. Col. Somsak Thangnaphadol. Sophon was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital.
"Our initial investigation shows that insurgents were responsible for killing this police officer," Somsak said. He said that witnesses had told police that the two assailants were wearing college student uniforms.
More than 1,100 people have been killed since early 2004 when a separatist insurgency re-emerged in Yala, Pattani and Narathiwat, the only Muslim-majority provinces in Buddhist-dominated Thailand.
Southern Muslims have long complained of discrimination in education and employment, and mistreatment by police and the military in the region, reports the AP. I.L.