Burmese escapers shot on TV

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The Independent Online

Nine Burmese prison escapers were shot dead by Thai commandoes yesterday inan attack broadcast on live television.

Nine Burmese prison escapers were shot dead by Thai commandoes yesterday inan attack broadcast on live television.

The van carrying the Burmese prisoners and their three hostages was surrounded by balaclava-clad officers who released a sustained round of shots aimed directly at the vehicle, obscuring it in a cloud of smoke.

After intense gunfire the marksmen moved in, apparently to finish off any of the convicts who were not already dead. All nine Burmese died but their hostages survived with noone seriously injured.

The prisoners, accused of criminal offences, seized a jail governor, Somwong Sirivej, and six wardens on Wednesday morning at Samut Sakhon provincial prison, south of Bangkok, shooting dead a prison rehabilitation officer.

The deputy prison governor, Sema Kumpanon, who escaped with minor wounds, said the captives never expected to live through their ordeal.

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