Security forces seized two M16 assault rifles together with some ammunition and bomb-making materials in searches of three locations in Si Sakhon district of Narathiwat on Sunday (Jan 7).
Security officials said that the two M16 assault rifles and 30 rounds of ammunition and a magazine were found hidden in a rubber plantation in Ban I-baluwong. Subsequent checks of the serial number of one of the two rifles have proven that it was part of a large cache of M16 rifles robbed from Pileng or Prince Narathiwatnakarin barrack in Cho-Airong district of Narathiwat several years ago.
The other rifle does not have a serial number which was believed to have been erased.
A search of another spot, about 200 metres from the first uncovered a 15-kg gas canister and two one-litre plastic bottles filled up with iron pieces for use in bomb making.
The third location in Ban Piloe, Tambon Sakor, searched by security forces was a meeting place of southern militants to plot their attacks against government officials.
Officials suspected that a group of militants met at the third spot about one week before the December 26 ambush of a paramilitary ranger’s unit, killing one and injuring three others.