Security officials in southern Yala province are examining an aerial drone seized at a house in Tambon Ba-ngo Sinae, Yaha district, on Thursday afternoon on suspicion it might have been used to survey a military outpost in the area that came under attack two days earlier.
The drone appears to belong to Maruding Sadiyamu, a resident of Ban Lima Puloh (Moo 3). Maruding is currently in Indonesia, working as an interpreter, but district chief Chaichana Krittiyanart quoted Maruding’s wife, Koriya Sadiyamu, as saying the drone was used only to take images of off-road motorcycle racing. Maruding is a member of the Redzone Off-road Yala Club, his wife said.
The drone was confiscated as part of an investigation into Tuesday’s M79 grenade attack on the military outpost in the same district, in which two paramilitary rangers were injured. Someone at the scene reported seeing a drone flying over the outpost days earlier, possibly scouting the layout ahead of the attack.
Although Fourth Army Region command is not convinced insurgents were using drones for surveillance, it issued a reminder on Wednesday that there are rules governing drone flights. Drones cannot be flown in aviation zones or near military outposts and checkpoints, or near other areas involving national security. Any found doing so could be seized and destroyed, it said.