Prayuth calls BRN terms unacceptable
text size

Prayuth calls BRN terms unacceptable

Demands must be kept separate from dialogue

The demands of the Barisan Revolusi Nasional far South separatist group are unacceptable, the army says.

Army chief Prayuth Chan-ocha confirmed the military's stance in response to the BRN's position that it would not rejoin peace talks with the government until its demands are met.

"We cannot accept them," said Gen Prayuth, who travelled to insurgency-torn Narathiwat yesterday on an inspection trip following the conclusion of the Ramadan ceasefire agreement, which ended on Sunday.

The general said he agreed with the peace process and wanted it to continue, but the BRN's demands must be handled separately from the negotiation process.

The BRN issued five demands in a video posted on Youtube in April.

The group says it has yet to receive a response from the Yingluck Shinawatra administration.

National Security Council adviser Charun Ampha said the authority can accept three of the demands, but not the two asking for the BRN to be referred to as a liberation movement, rather than separatists, and for the release of all detained suspects and revocation of warrants for the arrest of insurgents.

The other demands are for Malaysia to mediate the peace talks; for the dialogue to be attended by the Melayu Pattanis led by the BRN; and for the Thai government to allow representatives from Asean countries, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation and international NGOs to witness the talks. The five demands will be further discussed in a special meeting to be chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Pracha Promnok, who oversees national security, on Thursday.

Among the attendants will be representatives from the armed forces. Their opinions are important because they play a key role in maintaining security in the country, Pol Gen Pracha said.

Meanwhile, a teacher was killed and two military rangers were wounded in attacks believed to be carried out by militants, police said.

Athikhom Tiwong, a 34-year-old physical education teacher at Ban Prachan school in Pattani's Yarang district, was shot dead in a drive-by killing while he was riding his motorcycle in Muang district yesterday evening.

Investigators found a leaflet left by the attacker who said the killing was in retaliation against state security measures.

In Narathiwat's Cho Airong district, two soldiers were injured in a bomb blast while on patrol near Ban Cho Kro.

The bomb, planted near a power post, was detonated as a group of six security officers arrived at the spot.

The victims were identified as L/Cpl Kampanat Sukkaew, 30, the group leader, and ranger Thiradet Chanyu, 25.

In another development, police have identified five suspects involved in the killing of four policemen in a gun attack on Rueso-Si Sakhon road in Narathiwat on Aug 16, according a security source in the far South. One of the attackers was Hamdan Maero, a key insurgent suspect, said the source, citing a witness' account.

Do you like the content of this article?