Royal Thai Marines soldier

BRN Rebels Involved in Bangkok Blasts: Thai Security Officials

Thai officials knowledgeable on security matters in the country’s Deep South told BenarNews on Monday they believe the largest rebel fighting force in the insurgency-wracked region was behind recent bombings in Bangkok.

They claimed the bombings were aimed at drawing international attention to ongoing violence in the three Malay-speaking, majority-Muslim provinces near Thailand’s southern border, where more than 7,000 people have been killed in insurgency-related attacks in the past 15 years.

The comments came after a senior member of the National Revolutionary Front (BRN) told Reuters in a recent interview that the group was not involved in the blasts.

“I trust BRN operatives traveled to Bangkok to mount attacks in order to make news and draw foreign attention to intervene in Deep South violence. Lately, foreign countries do not pay attention to the ‘daily’ shootings or bombings,” a security source told BenarNews.

Many of the suspects have a record of links to the BRN, said the source, an intelligence officer based in the Deep South who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to reporters.

“I’m confident these attacks were carried out by the BRN operatives,” a senior military official told BenarNews, also speaking on condition of anonymity for the same reason.

He pointed to a spate of 11 bomb blasts in August 2016 in multiple locations in southern Thailand as evidence that rebel do not confine their activities to the Deep South.

“They scouted areas where they wanted to attack many months in advance before they attacked those provinces,” the official said.

The leader of a BRN combat unit later claimed responsibility for those attacks, which killed four. Four insurgents were found guilty that same year for bomb blasts that injured six people at a Bangkok university in 2013.

Full story: BenarNews

Nontarat Phaicharoen and Mariyam Ahmad
Bangkok and Pattani, Thailand

Full story: BenarNews

Copyright ©2019, BenarNews. Used with the permission of BenarNews.

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