Three militants surrender, say more on the way
- Published: 21/02/2013 at 04:15 PM
- Online news:
Three southern militants who said they had been hiding in Malaysia and admitted to being involved in the insurgency surrendered to Thai authorities on Thursday, saying they believed promises they would get fair treatment, police said.
The three insurgents were named as Rosalee Masa, 31, Mahadee Durae, 30, and Arwae Leelawae, 31. They are all from Tak Bai district, Narathiwat province.
The three were welcomed by Tak Bai district chief Somsak Sitthivorakarn, Tak Bai police chief Pol Col Prayong Kotesaka, and Narathiwat Task Force 36 commander Lt Col Wutthaya Chantamas on Thursday.
Three southern militants have surrendered to Thai authorities on Thursday. (Photo by Waedao Harai)
The insurgents said they decided to turn themselves in because they were tired of having to always hide from the authorities. They went into hiding in Malaysia five years ago.
Mr Rosalee said he had wanted to surrender a long time ago, but had no opportunity to do so.
"I'm glad that I'm back home to live with my family again, because it's hell having to live in hiding, and there's no other place where I can live happily and free like in Thailand.
"I'm sorry for the things that happened in the past but if the authorities will give me a chance, then I'm confident that I'll receive fair treatment," Mr Rosalee said.
He said 27 other insurgents who were living in Malaysia would also likely return to Thailand and surrender soon, but they were not yet totally convinced they would be justly treated.
"If I can liaise with them I'm positive that they might surrender," Mr Rosalee added.
The Tak Bai district chief said he would do anything to reassure those who have been misled by the insurgency leaders and encourage them to turn themselves in.
"It's time to open up our hearts and offer an opportunity and promise of fair treatment to those who have been misled.
"If all sides cooperate in developing the southern border provinces, sustainable peace and happiness will return to the region," Mr Somsak said.
Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yubamrung said on Thursday the military deserves credit for making it a policy that the Internal Security Operations Command should apply Section 21 of the Internal Security Act (ISA), in place of the much harsher emergency decree, in the far South.
Mr Chalerm was responding to army chief Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha's comment that using Section 21 of the ISA in certain areas in the three southernmost provinces had long been the policy of Isoc.
The deputy prime minister said the intention of Section 21 was that military, police or administrative officials who screen southern Islamist militants wanted on warrants for criminal offences, and who surrender, could decide if individual warrants should be voided.
A proposal for the dismissal of the warrants would then go to prosecutors and the court for a final decision. The process would take about six months, he said.
He said he was glad to see senior figures of the government visiting the southern border provinces.
On the nine members of the Wadah political group who have been appointed his advisers, Mr Chalerm said they would be invited to a meeting tomorrow at 2pm.
About the author
- Writer: Waedao Harai