Junta to appoint ‘front-line cabinet’ to deal with Deep South insurgency

In response to recent bomb attacks, the junta will establish a ‘front-line cabinet’ working directly under the junta’s supervision to resolve conflicts in Thailand’s restive Deep South. 
 
The junta is in the process of establishing a ‘front-line cabinet’, Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha, the junta head and Prime Minister, told the media at Government House on 13 September 2016. This cabinet is expected to work directly under the junta on the peace talks process with Deep South insurgents. Prayut said this cabinet will enable him to hear the voices of local people directly, reported Matichon Online
 
According to the junta head, the front-line cabinet will coordinate with Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC) and the Southern Border Province Administration Centre (SBPAC), two military agencies currently working on the Deep South conflict. The cabinet will comprise a Deputy Minister and experienced retired military officers and civil servants.
 
Prayut did not reveal how many members will be in the front-line cabinet or when it will be appointed. He only said that Deputy Prime Minister Gen Prawit Wongsuwan has been appointed to determine the cabinet structure.
 
The junta head also rejected news that the Barisan Revolusi Nasional (BRN) was responsible for the recent bombing of a school in the far south and also bomb attacks in seven provinces of the upper south on Thailand’s Mothers’ Day. Prayut said the news source is not credible, reported Matichon Online.
 
The BRN is the largest armed insurgent group operating in the restive Deep South. The group had revealed to a local Benar News that they were behind the recent bombings, saying the attacks were the group’s response to the lack of progress in peace talks between the Thai government and MARA Patani, an umbrella group representing various rebel groups and factions in the Deep South.
 
 
Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha (Photo from Matichon Online)