The Straits Times
Published on Dec 14, 2012

Thailand pledge tighter security for teachers, as militants vow more attacks


BANGKOK (AFP) - Thailand pledged on Friday to tighten security for teachers in its restive south as a leaflet campaign threatened further violence against educators amid widespread school closures over safety fears.

Two teachers were shot dead on Tuesday in the latest in a spate of attacks on educators. Lessons have been halted at around 1,200 schools this week in the Muslim-majority south, where nine years of unrest have cost thousands of lives.

Education Minister Phongthep Thepkanjana told reporters that "officials must intensify security measures" for teachers, often targeted by militants who see the education system as an effort by Bangkok to impose Buddhist culture.

Leaflets threatening further violence against educators, timed to coincide with a visit to the region on Thursday by Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, have also raised the stakes, said Mr Phongthep.