Troubles in the South – May-June 2005

Troubles in the South - May-June 2005

Troubles in the South index page



(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

Almost like being there: Yala Kris - June 30, 2005
Dr. Has reports: These Kris or Malay daggers are from Amphur Raman, Yala, but other places have them also. The most beautiful are from Raman. Foreigners, especially Malaysians, order them from this district. They are for Muslim people. They are handmade and seldom make nowadays. They are quite rare to find and difficult to make. The head and the knife sheath are made of wood or ivory. Sometimes they are decorated with diamonds or gems, but the knife is made by iron. Length: 12 inches. Usage: It is a weapon for self-protection or show an old people’s rank. Nowadays it is good to be a present for the older or senior person and home decoration. These were displayed on June 12 at the Informal Education School Center of Amphur Raman, Yala.


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

Above: Exclusive photo of one of the the four bomb sites.

Bomb site - June 25, 2005
Dr. Has reports: At 11:10 am on June 23, bombs went off at four district offices--Amphur Raman, Amphur Bannangsta, Amphur Krongpinang and Amphur Yaha--in Yala province. These photos were taken at Raman district. It is believed that the perpetrators hid a bomb inside a motorcycle. No one was injured. However at Amphur Yaha two people died and some were injured.

Vandalized phone box - Earlier bomb damage photos - Thread about this on the forum


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

Above: Parts of a motorcycle that blown blew up. Some parts were up to 100 meters away.


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)



(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

Almost like being there: Yala - June 21, 2005
Dr. Has reports: Here are items produced by people who studied in the short courses at the Informal Education School at Amphur Raman, Yala. These product were shown on the day of awarding certificates to those who completed courses on June 12.


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)



(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

Almost like being there: Yala - June 12, 2005
Dr. Has reports: June 12 - The Informal Education School Center of Amphur Raman, Yala organized a ceremony for handing out certificates for completion of short courses at the school. Mr. Wanmuhamad Nor Matha, PM advisor [right and above in purple], was invited to be the chairperson. Soldiers who stay in the area also received certificates for finishing a short course in the local Malayu language.


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

Above: Tuan Abdunlor Daomariyo, Director of Non-formal Education School Center of Amphur Raman, congratulates soldiers at the ceremony.


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

Almost like being there: Yala - June 7, 2005
Dr. Has reports: As the unrest situation in the southern border provinces is more serious nowadays, the government uses many ways to campaign for peace. Krongkarn Thumbon Sarnsumphan (Cement or Join Thumbon Relations Project - above) is one strategy that focuses on citizen participation in the area.


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

Almost like being there: Yala - June 7, 2005
Dr. Has reports: The ranger force that stays in Thumbol Talohalor, Amphur Raman, Yala helps teachers to make a plastic fish pond at Ban Talohalor school. They also look after teachers, students and people's safety in the area.


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

Almost like being there: Yala - June 1, 2005
Dr. Has reports on the recent spate of vandalism in Yala: On May 29 the unrest group used spray paint to write on the road and kilo stones. Above it reads "Pattani" and on the road they wrote "We do not want to separate the land, but we want our land back."


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)
In Amphur Raman, Yala, the unrest group tore down Thai flags and threw them on the ground, daubing some with excrement. It is interesting to note that the electricity went out for many hours and in many places during that time while the unrest group swept through and committed the vandalism.
Thailand terror case collapses - BBC, June 1, 2005


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

Almost like being there: Yala - May 31, 2005
Dr. Has reports: This building was bombed in March [2Bangkok also has a photo from that attack]. This month people creating unrest threw a bottle through the glass of this shop at Amphur Raman.
[While the newspapers scream "Rampage in the South," it is interesting to see actual photos of the terrorist damage and see how minor it often is. Other examples of damage are phone booth set on fire and wooden pavilion bombed.]

Half the violent incidents in South were personal conflicts - TNA, May 29, 2005
[This kind of report is similar to earlier government claims that most (or all) of those killed during the government's crackdown on drugs were killed my drug gangs and not the police. It is probable that this type of damage-control report indicates government alarm at how the persistent southern problems are being perceived.]
Half of the 42 unrest incidents which took place in Thailand's three troubled southern border provinces of Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat last week were the result of personal conflicts, said the Southern Border Provinces Peace-building Command (SBPPC).
Investigators found that several incidents that took place last week were not related to the continuing violence in the three southern border provinces, the assistant spokesman of SBPPC, Lt. Col. Niroj Thammayot told TNA on Sunday...

On the forum: The Tak Bai Thais of Kelantan - May 23, 2005
Nils points out: Interesting and well-written article about the Thai/Buddhist minority in Kelantan.


(Photo: Dr. Has for 2Bangkok.com)

Almost like being there: Yala - May 23, 2005
Dr. Has reports: At present, the unrest in three southern border province is more serious. All the government organizations have launched anti-terrorist advertising campaigns. The above banner is from Amphur Raman and reads: We Amphur Raman residents put the faith in religious doctrine. Love peaceful and calm.

Thailand risks drawing "jihadists" to south - ICG - Reuters, May 18, 2005
Foreign "jihadists" may be drawn to Thailand's restive Muslim deep south if the government fails to address injustices and open a genuine dialogue with southern leaders, an influential think-tank said on Wednesday...

International think tank: Southern Thai violence driven by bad policy, not outsiders - AP, May 18, 2005
Southern Thailand's growing extremist Muslim insurgency has derived much of its momentum from the government's heavy-handed efforts to crush it, an international research institute said Wednesday.
The report by the Brussels-based International Crisis Group concluded that foreign terrorists have not been directly involved in the violence.
But it warned that outside elements could come in and launch a jihad, or holy war, unless Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra's government recognizes southern Thai Muslims' political grievances and makes efforts to start a dialogue with them...

Editorial: Adapting is the way to solve the southern problem - translated and summarized from Matichon, May 19, 2005
The editor suggests that the government should mobilize people with good practices should be responsible in the three areas of the southern provinces. Those who make conditions and make people get angry should be moved. The people who can solve the problems should like challenges and risky work, the government should give them insurance and a special allowance, not the same rate all around the country.
Thailand has a history of fighting communists for 30-40 years and won with the political policy of 66/2523 that returned freedom to the people. But when winning against the communists, we could see the people and their ways, but in the unrest in the south the terrorists do not think about the just. So it is difficult for the government to consider reacting delicately and use intellect to reach the people to participate in government.
It may be take long time if we wait the conclusion from the Nation Reconciliation Committee chaired by Mr. Anan Panyarachun because this may take almost one year. For the serious crisis, the Prime Minister and all responsible persons should adapt methods and be equal to the situation. If possible, the PM should discuss and exchange opinions often with the Nation Reconciliation Committee and launch the appropriate action. In one month, it had focused on SIM cards and is now talking about the new law that gives power to government officials instead of martial law. Besides this, we have not heard anything that the government is doing anything concerning political action.

Cambodian Muslims flock to Thailand's troubled South - TNA, May 19, 2005
...Thai border officials are wary of the men because they all had valid passports and visas, even though these are very costly, Col. Nirut said.
It usually costs around 20,000 baht for a Cambodian to acquire a national passport and a Thai visa and this would normally be beyond their means, he said.
''These men were also always accompanied by an Islamic cleric who would hire a minivan to take them down to Narathiwat province. They said they were poor and the cleric would pay for all their expenses,'' he said.
Thai detectives have been tracking these men and keeping an eye on their whereabouts and activities in Thailand.
''We fear that these Cambodian Muslims might have been lured by the southern insurgents to take part in their activities,'' Col. Nirut said.
... The Cambodian authorities have been keeping an eye on the rapid growth of a Muslim village in Poi Pet, about 4 kilometres from Thai border, according to a Cambodian official.
Founded a year ago, the village population has grown from 900 Muslims to more than 10,000 people, he said.
Cambodian and foreign Islamic clerics have visited the poor villagers and persuaded them to convert to Islam by promising them free food and jobs in Thailand and Malaysia, the official said.
The Cambodian authorities believe the funds have come from overseas, he said.

Thailand's white knight shaken by insurgency - Asia Times, May 4, 2005
Four years ago, Anand Panyarachun told Thailand's Thaksin Shinawatra just what he thought of the confident prime minister's mission to remodel the nation in his own image: "When a country has a leader who considers himself a white knight, who can solve every problem, has an answer to every question and can [single-handedly] make the nation survive, then there must be great caution," said Anand, himself a former prime minister. "In reality, no white knight exists and the Thai nation has to rely on itself..."
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