Prayuth backs Yingluck as defence minister
The security situation in the far South should improve following Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra's decision to take on the post of defence minister, national army chief Prayuth Chan-ocha said on Wednesday.
- Published: 3/07/2013 at 04:56 PM
- Newspaper section: topstories
Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha, left, and Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra. Prayuth says the situation in the far South should improve following PM Yingluck's decision to concurrently become defence minister.
"The decision [to take on the defence portfolio] lies with the prime minister and the government. We subordinates must respect the decision made by our superiors.
"I believe this decision will improve the southern situation because she can make decisions and issue orders immediately," Gen Prayuth said.
Gen Prayuth also said the mid-year military reshuffle will be free of political influence.
The premier had already given an assurance the government will not intervene, he added.
Deputy Prime Minister Pracha Promnok meanwhile said that peace talks with the Barisan Revolusi National (BRN) should continue, with the participation of more separatist groups.
Pol Gen Pracha, who is now in charge of security affairs, replacing Labour Minister Chalerm Yubamrung, said he would first consult the National Security Council (NSC), National Intelligence Agency (NIA), and Southern Border Provinces Administrative Centre (SBPAC) to discuss strategies being employed for solving problems in the troubled area.
"It is good for both sides to hold talks. Whether this will be successful or not is a matter of the future," he said.
"I will have to discuss this matter with the NSC, NIA and SBPAC. The (separatist) groups already taking part in the talks should not be left out. Instead, we should bring in more groups to participate."
Pol Gen Pracha Promnok (Photo by Chanat Katanyu)
Pol Gen Pracha said he would focus on developing work in line with advice from His Majesty the King and operational tactics that suit police and soldiers operating in the area.
People in the three southern border provinces of Yala, Pattani, and Narathiwat should be given more access to education and help to improve their quality of life and uphold their human rights, he said.
He added that he planned to visit the Region 4 Internal Security Operations Command's forward headquarters and SBPAC before the beginning of the fasting month of Ramadan around July 9.
In Yala's Bannang Sata district on Wednesday morning, a policeman was slightly wounded by a bomb explosion in front of a television repair shop.
Police said a bomb disposal team was sent to the shop on Sukhayang road at 6.30am after the owner found an object suspected to be a bomb and reported it to the police.
As police were about to cordon off the area the bomb went off. Pol Cpl Prawit Mailuang sustained minor injuries.
The bomb, weighing about 5kg, in an iron box, was detonated remotely with a mobile phone.
Also in Bannang Sata district, an iron box weighing about 5kg was also found in front of the Krung Thai Bank this morning. It was later destroyed by explosive ordnance disposal police.
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- Writer: Online Reporters
- Position: Online Reporters