It appears the government is gearing up for formal peace talks with the southern separatist or insurgent gangs, with Malaysia acting as the facilitator.
Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra is due to meet her Malaysian counterpart, Najib Razak, in Kuala Lumpur today, to discuss the government's peace process initiative and the role to be played by Malaysia.
A joint statement is expected after the meeting.
National Security Council secretary-general Lt Gen Paradorn Pattanatabutr, who will accompany the prime minister on the visit to Malaysia, said the countries would work out channels for talks with the insurgent groups.
An advance group of officials led by Lt Gen Paradorn and Pol Col Thawee Sodsong, secretary-general of the Southern Border Provinces Administration Centre (SBPAC) was in Kuala Lumpur last week to hold talks with Malaysian officials to lay the groundwork for the meeting today.
The government's peace initiative with Malaysia marks a major step in the right direction to explore a new non-military avenue to resolve the bloody conflict in the deep South which has claimed more than 5,000 lives, most of them innocent Muslims and Buddhists, over the past nine years.
Whether the olive branch extended by the government will be accepted by the juwae, or the new generation of fighters who dominate the ranks of the insurgent groups, remains to be seen.
But security officials who favour the peace approach appear unworried about this issue at this stage as they believe the initiative will win the support of local people, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation and the "old guard" separatists.
Eventually it could pressure the juwae to sit down at the negotiating table too.
Malaysia's collaboration is crucial to the success of the initiative. The country has won widespread recognition for its key role in brokering a peace deal signed last year between the Philippines government and the Moro National Liberation Front.
It brought an end to a 40-year conflict and led to the creation of a semi-autonomous region called Bangsamoro in Mindanao.
As a neighbouring country sharing a common border stretching several hundred kilometres, Malaysia has served as a safe haven for several separatists and sympathisers.
Worse still, some Malaysian state officials are suspected by Thai authorities of providing shelter to the separatist cause.
Crucially though, Malaysian cooperation may represent just part of the solution.
The other part, which is equally important, is the problem of injustice which is believed to be one of the root causes of the conflict and badly in need of rectification.One clear example is the Tak Bai clash in which 78 Muslims died of suffocation while being trucked from a protest site in Tak Bai district to a military camp in Pattani. Another seven were shot dead by security forces. No military officers were held accountable for the deaths and public prosecutors decided not to press criminal charges against any of them.
Undoubtedly, the government has made the right decision to pursue the peace option. The only weak link about this approach is there seems to be no unity as the military has been left out of the equation. This needs to be rectified immediately if the peace initiative is to be given a better chance of success.