Not an ally of the separatists, the party is "ready to act as a go-between for all sides in any future negotiations."
Photo above of Muslim schoolchildren on a field trip to Krue Se Mosque in Pattani, built in 1583.
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Prachatham woos southerners using local 'Malayu' language by Abdulloh Benjakat
The Prachatham Party says the local language called Malayu is its main selling point in its campaign to win over voters in the Muslim-dominated southernmost provinces.
The party has used Malayu, the language used by a vast majority of Muslims in Yala, Pattani, and Narathiwat, in its campaign materials in the three provinces.
Prachatham claims it is the only political party whose leader, Makhatar Keela, is a local and that all party members are residents of the three provinces, said Muhammad Hayeewaehama, who is the party's candidate in Constituency 1 of Pattani.
We're now being viewed as an ally of the separatists. I can assure you that we're only a party that is ready to act as a go-between for all sides in any future negotiations," said Mr Muhammad who also serves as head of the Pattani branch office of Prachatham.
Many people have wondered and asked why Prachatham had been established and if it can beat the mainstream political parties, he said.
He said the party wants to be a genuine representative of southern residents, who have suffered from the seemingly endless violence in the region.
Over the past seven years, no politician has been able to address the problems of locals who have suffered dearly from the southern unrest, particularly the Krue Se and Tak Bai incidents.
On April 28, 2004, 32 people were shot dead inside the Krue Se mosque in Pattani's Muang district after it was taken over by suspected militants
On Oct 25 of the same year, at least 85 people who were arrested while demonstrating outside Tak Bai district police station in Narathiwat province, died of suffocation while being transported to Ingkayuthboriharn base in Pattani's Nong Chik district.
The party does not use canvassers, but its candidates have visited mosques to meet voters, Mr Muhammad said.
Despite its concentration on the local language, the party does not neglect area residents who do not speak the Malayu language.
Meanwhile, a man was killed and his wife injured in a shooting attack in Pattani's Yarang district yesterday morning.
Koseng Chema, 46, was gunned down by unknown attackers on a bridge in tambon Khlong Mai, while Mae Dueramae, 43, narrowly survived the attack.
Her head was grazed by a bullet, said Pol Sub Lt Adisorn Phanthumat, a police investigator in charge of the case.
The couple were riding a motorcycle when the attackers shot at them from a hidden position, the police investigator said. Three spent 11mm bullet shells were found at the attack scene.
(Source: Bangkok Post, Prachatham woos southerners using local 'Malayu' language, 24/06/2011, Abdulloh Benjakat, link)
Malayu - "a dialect of the Malay language spoken in the southernmost provinces of Thailand along the border with Malaysia. It is the primary spoken language of the Thai Malay ethnic group, but is also used as a linga franca by ethnic Thai in rural areas", also known as "Pattani Malay" language or "Jawi" or "Yawi" (See Wikipedia)
Islam (noun) - the name of the major world religion (See Wikipedia)
Muslim (noun, adjective) - a person who has Islam as their religion
mosques - the buildings that are places of worship in the Islam religion (See Wikipedia)
Krue Se mosque - a mosque in Pattani Province, Thailand "begun in about 1583, but was never completed because of a power struggle between the sultan of Pattani and his brother. The present structure dates to the 18th century CE and features a mixture of Middle Eastern and European architectural styles" มัสยิดกรือเซะ (See Wikipedia)
incidents - events which are either unpleasant or unusual เหตุการณ์
Krue Se Mosque incident - on 28 April 2004 the storming of Krue Se Mosque in Pattani that resulted in the deaths of all 32 militants inside the mosque, this decision by General Pallop Pinmanee went against Defense Minister Chavalit's order to seek a peaceful resolution no matter how long it took (See Wikipedia)
Tak Bai incident - "an event that occurred on October 25, 2004 in Tak Bai, Thailand, which resulted in at least 85 deaths. Six local men were arrested. A demonstration was organized to demand their release and the police called in army reinforcements. After some demonstrators threw rocks and attempted to storm the police station, security forces used tear gas and gunfire in response. Hundreds of local people, mostly young men, were arrested. They had their shirts taken off, bound with their hands tied behind their backs, and made to lie face down on the ground. Video footage shows soldiers kicking and beating those already bound and helplessly lying on the ground. Later that afternoon, those arrested were thrown by soldiers into trucks to be taken to an army camp in the next province of Pattani. The prisoners were stacked five or six deep in the trucks, and by the time the trucks reached their destination three hours later, many had suffocated to death. Reports claim that 7 died as a result of gunshot wounds. The rest are believed to have died either from suffocation or beatings. This incident sparked widespread protests across Thailand...Shortly after the incident, PM Thaksin Shinawatra's first response defended the army's actions and said the men died 'because they were already weak from fasting during the month of Ramadan.'" (See Wikipedia)
persuade - try to change a person's mind and get them to do or believe something ชักชวน
woo - persuade, convince
selling point - some good fact about the product you are trying to sell, that you use to persuade someone to buy it
win over voters - get voters to vote for you (persuade, convince voters)
dominated - controlled ถูกควบคุม ถูกชักใย บงการ
Muslim-dominated - meaning: most of the people living in the area (population) are Muslims
local - in or related to the area that you live, or to the particular area that you are talking about ท้องถิ่น
election campaign - a planned series of activities designed to persuade voters to vote for a particular candidate or political party การรณรงค์หาสียง
campaign - same as "election campaign"
party - one of the people or groups of people involved in an official argument, arrangement or similar situation คู่กรณี
vast - extremely large in area, size, amount, etc. กว้างใหญ่, มหาศาล ส่วนใหญ่
majority - more than half of the people in a group เสียงส่วนมาก
vast majority - most people in a group (as much as 80% to 90%)
campaign materials - flyers, leaflets and other written materials and photographs given to people to convince and persuade them to vote for an election candidate
residents - people who live in an area ผู้อยู่อาศัย ผู้อาศัย ราษฎรในบริเวณนั้น ชาวบ้านในบริเวณ
candidate - a person who is trying to win an elected position ผู้สมัคร
constituency - the area and population that an elected MP represents in parliament
ally - someone who helps and supports someone else คนกลุ่มหรือประเทศที่อยู่ในกลุ่มเดียวกัน
separatists - people in a country working to make a separate country within a country
assure - to tell something that something is true or will definitely happen ให้ความมั่นใจ, ยืนยัน
go-between - a person who helps two groups of people who are fighting or have a disagreement solve their problem and become friends again
ready to act as a go-between for all sides
negotiations - formal discussion in which people or groups try to reach an agreement การเจรจาต่อรอง when two or more sides talk about their problems (a dialogue): to resolve disputes, to produce an agreement upon courses of action, to bargain for individual or collective advantage, or to craft outcomes to satisfy various interests (See Wikipedia)
branch - an office or shop representing a large company or organisation in a particular area สาขา
established - created
beat - win ชนะ
mainstream - accepted or used by most people; considered ordinary or normal ทั่้วๆ ไป ทางหลัก ที่กำลังได้รับความนิยมหรือแนวโน้มที่สำคัญ
parties - political parties
genuine - real; honest; sincere
representative - a person who has chosen by a group to make act for their benefit (here: in parliament)
genuine representative of Y - a representative who really acts for the benefit of the people they represent
suffered - their life has been very difficult to live (experiencing much pain both emotional and physical)
suffered dearly - suffered very much
violence - physical force with the deliberate intention of causing damage to property or injury or death to people ความรุนแรง
seemingly endless violence - the violence continues and never ends (it feels or "seems" like this, no proof, evidence or statistics are given to support the claim and assertion)
address a problem - to try to deal with and solve a problem or question จัดการกับปัญหา
locals - people who live in a particular place ชาวบ้าน
unrest - when people show their anger and dissatisfaction with some situation (by protesting, rioting or even sometimes outright rebellion)
X taken over by Y - Y gained control of X
suspected - people believe that they might have done something wrong, but not yet proven เป็นที่สงสัย
militants - people who use violent or forceful methods to achieve something ผู้ใช้ความรุนแรงในการโจมตี
suffocation - dying from a lack of air to breathe
base - army base
army base - a special place in an area where the military live or are "stationed"
candidate - a person who is trying to win an elected position ผู้สมัคร
canvasser - a person with the job of getting people to vote for a candidate
concentration on the local language - the "focus" or the thing they treat and consider as most important
neglect - to give not enough care or attention to people or things that are your responsibility การละเลย
gunned down - had a bullet shot at them with a gun
survived - continued to live or exist รอดมาได้
survived the attack - did not die in the attack (still alive)
graze - touch slightly and pass by
bullet - a small, metal object that is shot from a gun กระสุนปืน
spent - used ที่ใช้ไป
spent bullet shells - bullets that have already been used (and are collected by police investigators as evidence)
attack scene - the place where the attack happened (the "crime scene" or "scene of the crime")
investigator - someone whose job is to officially find out the facts about something, especially a crime or accident ตำรวจฝ่ายสอบสวนคดีอาชญากรรม
in charge of the case - managing or supervising the case
couple - two people who are married or are involved in a romantic relationship คุ่รัก
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