Bangkok, May 6: Army in Thailand's insurgency-hit southern region will train more than 1,000 school teachers, in weapons use for self-defence against militant attacks.
The Thai Army will organise the weapons training for the teachers, both men and women, next week ahead of the reopening of schools after the summer vacation.
About 15,000 teachers in the three southern provinces of Yala, Narathiwat and Pattani have applied, to join the Teacher Protection Battalions being raised to protect school teachers against growing attacks by Islamic militants.
About 40 school teachers have been killed and more than 100 injured in militant attacks since the separatist insurgency flared up in January 2004. More than 1,200 people have been killed in the violence in the country's Muslim-majority region.
In a latest incident, a Muslim police officer was gunned down yesterday afternoon, while praying in a mosque in Pattani province.
Leaflets with cartoon drawings of security forces firing at Muslims were distributed yesterday at several mosques in the province's Raman district, the reports said.