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Pattaya Daily News

08 February 2007 :: 23:02:26 pm 29728

Government pledges action on Queen‘s advice

BANGKOK, Feb 8 - The Thai government has pledged to respond to Her Majesty the Queen‘s advice for resolving violence in the restive South, according to Interior Minister Aree Wong-araya.
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“We cannot sit still anymore. It is not right [to allow the violence]. We should condemn it to show our dissatisfaction at such actions,” she said.

HM the Queen was addressing a group of people who had been granted a royal audience to establish a charity fund for the Queen Sirikit Foundation at the Grand Palace.

“I think Thai people all over the country should express their views and opinions that it is absolutely wrong to kill other people, notably the elderly and women who cannot protect themselves,” she said.

HM the Queen urged people, especially in Bangkok, to take action against the violence which has killed around 2,000 people since the beginning of 2004. It was Her Majesty’s first plea this year amid no signs of an end to the violence.

“We should do something, like the gathering of people with me today. We should express our views via radio, television or letters to tell the militants to stop, otherwise they could turn our country into an uncivilised society in which they can kill anybody, anytime,” she said. “We have to stop the violence now, it’s enough,” she said.

Heeding the Queen’s advice himself, Mr. Aree said he agreed that many things must be done urgently in response to her advice and he expected that the government, by the prime minister himself, will convene a meeting of agencies concerned to discuss the issue.

He said the government has tried in its utmost efforts to resolve the violence but it is not an easy job.

“We must accept that we are in bright sunlight, and highly visible, while our opponents operate under cover of darkness,” the minister said. The only thing that we can do now is to create understanding and cordial feelings among local people to gain their cooperation.

Mr. Aree said he is confident that with the varied projects being presently implemented by the revived Southern Border Provinces Administrative Centre (SBPAC), mainly focussing on improving the quality of life of the local population in the five southernmost border provinces, the situation in the region will improve as the people better understand that the state authorities are working for the benefit of their communities.

Meanwhile, Theera Mintrasak, governor of Yala, one of three violence-beset southern border provinces, said HM the Queen has expressed her great concern over the southern insurgency on several occasions as well as given her moral support to both state authorities and civil groups working to end the violence that takes place almost in a daily basis.

The governor urged all parties to cooperate in resolving the problem as advised by HM the Queen.

Almost 2,000 people have been killed in the southern unrest since it reemerged in January 2004.

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : Internet   Category : Politics News

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