By The Nation
The bombs were intended to harm security officers and were made in Malaysia, said Narathiwat police chief Pol Maj-General Manas Siksamat.
Security checkpoints have been put on alert in response to the arrest, said a security source.
Zanuzi Yatae, 39, was arrested on Thursday at noon after his pickup was stopped in Saring village in Tambon Kosit in Narathiwat’s Tak Bai district, said Manas. He is a resident of Tambon Tanyongmas in Narathiwat’s Rangae district.
Another suspect, Abdulasi Sama, a resident of Tak Bai, fled on foot along a border canal and was later picked up by a motorcyclist.
Manas said police learned the identity of the second suspect from a passport found in a bag that fell while he was fleeing.
Police bomb disposal experts who checked the 41 pipe bombs said the bombs could have been used as grenades to hurl at targets or set to be detonated by timing devices.
Police believe the bombs were assembled in Malaysia because the PVC pipes used were not available in Thailand.
Police said as Zanuzi told them that he and the second suspect drove their pickup to the border at Ban Pado village in Tambon Na Nak in Tak Bai and four insurgents on two motorcycles arrived with the bombs.
They wrapped the bombs in thick clothes to prevent them from accidentally detonating and drove their pickup to Narathiwat’s Yingor district but were arrested by highway police on the way.
A security source said all security checkpoints have been instructed to step up security, as they might be attacked by pipe bombs hurled by insurgents. The checkpoints were warned that attackers might conceal their faces using full-sized crash helmets or dress as Muslim women with their faces concealed by a headscarf while riding motorcycles.