ThaiSouth: Reinforcements Balancing with Social Development

The cabinet today approved an Interior Ministry proposal to assign 2,700 territorial defence volunteers to Thailand’s far South to help maintain peace and security in the insurgency-plagued region.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra instructed the recruitment of southerners for the volunteer forces so that they could work closely with the southern authorities and people.

The Interior Ministry promised to dispatch the defence volunteers to the region as soon as possible.

Meanwhile, leader of the opposition Democrat Party, Abhisit Vejjajiva, called on the government, which contemplates imposing curfew in risk-prone areas in the far South, to learn from a similar lesson in 2005-2006 when curfew was declared in the South to gauge the impact of the measure. If the government believes a curfew is efficient in solving the southern unrest, it should communicate with people in the region for common understanding and acceptance, he said. 


The security and safety of civilians is a top priority, which I am sure many in the southern provinces of Narathiwat, Pattani and Yala would agree. However its not as simple as sending more security forces to these provinces that would reduce the movements of the militants. A combination of social development projects to improve the quality of life for the locals, along with mobilizing the Malaysian government into brokering peace initiatives are vital for sustainable improvements. 
Even the Thai Muslims living and working in Bangkok are eager to see an end to the violence, many have families and loved ones still living in terror of the militants and their random acts of carnage. 

As for Abhisit's statement to the Thai govt, I wonder what he, his political party and their allies are doing in the ThaiSouth; even when I was in Narathiwat, many whom I had spoken to were unhappy with the overbearing influence of the Democrats yet have failed repeated to do anything besides talk, talk and talk. 

If you're on twitter, do follow the news and opinions via #ThaiSouth


Update: news 

Please read: A Chat with a Pattani Family in Bangkok 


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