Hot! Thailand Holds Peace Talks with Insurgents

Peace talks are now underway with Thailand pas the government tries to make headway with insurgent groups in the south of the country. Thousands of people have been killed since 2004 in violence blamed on Muslim separatists.

Though the government has ruled out peace talks in the past, Yutthasak Sasiprapa, a deputy prime minister in charge of security in the south, confirmed there had been a change of heart.

The Southern Border Provinces Administration Center, a government agency in charge of security operations in the south, said talks were being held with current and former members of groups active in the region after a spike in violence in the three southernmost provinces bordering Malaysia.

According to the Daily Times, the provinces of Pattani, Yala, and Narathiwat have seen almost daily gun fights and bomb attacks since the separatists’ insurgency. The conflict has claimed more than 5,200 lives, according to Deep South Watch, and organization that monitors the violence.

The Thai government has been liaising with two main insurgent groups but talks are not yet at the negotiation stage. The government is also targeting young people recruited by militant groups to try to get them to give up violence.

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