Several bombs hit southern Thailand ahead of anniversary celebration (dpa German Press Agency)

Bangkok (dpa) – Several small bombs hit southern Thailand on Saturday
ahead of festivities celebrating the region’s incorporation into
Thailand, the army said.

Several bombs targeted electricity poles and junctures in Narathiwat
province, 1,100 kilometres south of Bangkok, ahead of the centenary
celebration.

There were at least two separate incidents Saturday morning according
to Colonel Banphot Poonpien, of the army’s Internal Security
Operations Command.

Local police sources say that the bombs targeted electricity poles to
disrupt a Muay Thai boxing match, which had been set to be the
centrepiece of the celebrations.

Officials say that the bombings have little to do with a separate
blast in Bangkok on Monday, which killed 20 and injured more than
100.

Narathiwat was incorporated into Thailand 100 years ago, Saturday.
Before it was annexed, the province was part of a independent Muslim
sultanate.

Narathiwat, along with two other Muslim-majority southern provinces,
have been embroiled in an insurgency since 2004 against the central
government in the predominantly Buddhist nation.

More than 5,000 people been killed in the ongoing conflict.