BRN rebels blamed for Yala school bomb
- Published: 10/09/2013 at 04:02 PM
- Online news:
YALA - Rebel BRN insurgents opposed to peace talks were believed to have planted the bomb that killed two soldiers and wounded two others and a student at a school in Yala's Muang district on Tuesday.
Security personnel inspect the site of the bomb explosion at Kanarasdorn Bumroong 2 School in Yala's Muang district on Tuesday. The blast killed two soldiers, part of a patrol to protect the teachers, and wounded two others and a 12-year-old student. (Reuters photo)
Pramote Promin, spokesman for the Internal Security Operations Command's Southern Forward Command, said it was believed a splinter group of the Barisan Revolusi Nasional (BRN) had planted the bomb in the guard booth inside the compound fence of Kanarasdorn Bumroong 2 School.
"It's the work of the BRN, which is obsessed with violence,'' he said.
Col Pramote said the insurgents were trying to derail attempts by the government to restore peace in the southernmost region, and he condemned their actions.
The bomb was hidden behind the guard booth exploded about 10am, when five soldiers attached to the Yala Task Force 11 had parked their motorcycles there and were taking a break after escorting teachers to the school earlier in the morning.
Killed in the explosion were Sgt Prathet Chan-on and Pvt Wuthichai Boonthongchuay. It also injured two soldiers and a 12-year-old student, all were immediately sent to Yala General Hospital.
Pol Col Pacharapol na Nakhon, chief of Muang police station, said the bomb was inside a 15 kilogramme gas cylinder and detonated by radio. It was not clear if a mobile phone SIM was used by the insurgents.
The attack occurred as the government and the BRN's designated negotiators plan a new round of talks to end violence. The two sides have not met since the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan in August
The BRN has demanded Thailand accept five demands before it will return to the negotiating table in the talks facilitated by Malaysia.
BRN spokesmen months ago posted the demands on YouTube, and the separatist movement formally forwarded its 30-page demand in writing to the National Security Council last week. The document is written in English and is being translated into Thai.
The translated demands will be tabled for discussion at a meeting of the Centre for the Implementation of Policies and Strategies for Solving Southern Problems on Friday, National Security Council (NSC) secretary-general Paradorn Pattanabut said on Tuesday.
Lt Gen Paradorn indicated it is unlikely that the BRN's conditions will be agreed to on Friday, because the government needs to study the legal implications of the demands, including the key issue of whether they are in breach of the constitution.
The demands say government must acknowledge that the BRN represents the rights of the "Melayu Patani nation'' in the dialogue, that all detained suspects must be released and that all arrest warrants concerning national security cases must be suspended and revoked.
The BRN also wants other members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation and international NGOs to be allowed to observe the peace talks, insists on being recognised as a liberation movement, rather than a separatist group, and wants Malaysia to be the mediator, rather than facilitator, of the talks.
''Personally, I don't think the demands are in breach of the constitution, but a thorough study of the legal implications is still needed,'' Lt Gen Paradorn said.
Thailand and the BRN both expect the next meeting will be in the second half of October, Lt Gen Paradorn said.
The constitution states that any agreements affecting sovereignty and territory must get endorsement from parliament.
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Writer: Bangkok Post and AFP