BRN slams Muslim Ramadan attacks
- Published: 7/08/2013 at 06:18 PM
- Online news:
Barisan Revolusi Nasional (BRN) negotiator Hassan Taib has submitted a protest letter to the government over Bangkok's failure to provide safety for Muslim people in the deep South during the holy month of Ramadan.
Muslims carry the body of Imam Yacob Raimanee outside the Central Mosque in Pattani on Monday. The Muslim leader seen as a major figure in efforts to end a bloody insurgency in the South was shot dead, raising concern about the future of peace talks. (AFP file photo)
The letter was submitted through Ahmad Zamzamin Hashim, the Malaysian facilitator for the negotiations between Thailand and the separatist group, a security source told Isra News Agency.
The source said BRN was unhappy with Thailand over safety provisions for Muslims in the far South, resulting in the deaths of 11 Muslim people during the violence-free period. The group was also disappointed at the government's failure to reduce violence in the deep South and demanded explanations from Bangkok, the source said.
BRN insisted in the letter that it was not involved in arson attacks against businesses in the deep South last Friday when several concerns in Pattani, Yala and Songkhla were set ablaze.
The fasting period will end on Thursday. Thailand and the BRN agreed to temporarily end violence from July 10 to Aug 18.
The agreement covers Narathiwat, Pattani, Yala and five districts of Songkhla: Na Thawi, Chana, Thepha, Saba Yoi and Sadao. But the Thai army rejected the inclusion of Sadao district in the agreement.
Mr Hassan denied reports that the BRN had tendered his resignation letter from the talks because of the failure of the ceasefire agreement.
Mr Hassan said he still supported the negotiations and was ready to move them forward.
He said the BRN will not attack non-military targets and mourned the death of Imam Yacob Raimanee, an imam of the Pattani Central Mosque, who was gunned down on Monday.
The withdrawal of the BRN from the talks was reported in the Thai media.
Pol Col Thawee Sodsong, director of the Southern Border Provinces Administration Centre, said the reports were groundless. Mr Hassan was still the BRN chief negotiator, he added.