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Army takes a hard line with rebels

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ANUPONG RULES OUT TALKS, SAYS MILITANTS MUST FACE COURT

PATTANI : The army has shot down a call to negotiate with insurgents to end conflicts in the restive South.

Army chief Anupong Paojinda said no talks would be held with separatist groups during his tenure, which ends in September next year.

“We won’t negotiate with them. But we will take legal action against them,” he told the Bangkok Post.

“They have to be brought to trial for having murdered innocent people,” said Gen Anupong, who accompanied Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban on a trip to inspect government development projects in Pattani and Narathiwat last week.

Gen Anupong was reacting to calls by Puea Thai chairman Gen Chavalit Yongchaiyudh to negotiate with separatist groups to end the violence.

Gen Chavalit has also proposed an amnesty for militants in the three Muslim-dominated provinces.

Since violence resurfaced in the region six years ago, it has claimed almost 4,000 lives.

(Bangkok Post)


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