Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra said during her trip to the restive South yesterday the government would integrate all strategic plans to restore peace in accordance with His Majesty the King’s guidance – understanding, reaching out and development.
Yingluck, together with her deputies Yongyuth Wichaidit and Yuthasak Sasiprapha, visited the predominantly Muslim region to meet religious and local leaders as well as officials of state agencies mobilising their participation to enforce government policies.
Many religious leaders urged her to visit the region regularly and encourage efforts to restore peace. She told them the government would step up security measures for the safety of local residents and promote all areas in the region equally.
The government would emphasise local participation, create jobs for local people and rely on peaceful ways to contain violence, she said.
On the security front, Deputy Prime Minister Yuthasak would chair a committee to implement policies and monitor how they were implemented, she said.
The Southern Border Province Administrative Centre (SBPAC) and the Internal Security Operation Command (ISOC) would co-ordinate closely to share manpower in security operations.
Deputy Prime Minister Kittirat Na Ranong would take care of economic development for the deep South, Yingluck said.
The situation in the region was normal yesterday when Yingluck visited. Sunday was one day after the eighth anniversary of the Krue Se uprising in which 105 young Muslims were killed during simultaneous attacks on security outposts in Pattani, Yala and Songkhla.
Violence in the deep South erupted in early 2004 and has seen more than 5,000 people killed since. The government blames separatist insurgents for the violence although no group has surfaced to claim responsibility.
Police yesterday presented suspect Amphan Wa-ngor, 25, to show his alleged involvement in a planned car bomb in Narathiwat’s Wang district in March. Officials were able to defuse the bomb in front of an office of the Telephone Organisation of Thailand. Amphon was arrested in the early hours of yesterday at an undisclosed place.
Police arrested three suspects last week believed to be members of the same group under the Rundi Kumpulun Kecil (RKK). They were Nasori Ibraheng 31, Abdullah Samaea 38 and Taofic Ira, 24.
Police claim the suspects rode motorbikes to ascertain the situation while Abdullah drove a pickup with a bomb to park at the TOT site. Their leader Ahama Dalor is still on the run, police said.