A woman in Thailand’s Deep South identified her son on Monday as a student being held by Egyptian authorities on suspicion of links to Islamic State extremists.
News about the student’s arrest broke after the Thai Embassy in Cairo posted a statement on its Facebook page Saturday, saying it had taken steps to help him. The statement did not identify the detained student.
“A Thai student in Egypt was arrested by Egyptian security officials on Sept. 24, 2019, because they found photos that might indicate a link to IS,” the embassy said, using an acronym for the Islamic State.
The embassy said the arrest took place after a local TV station in Egypt had “disseminated a clip” online allegedly showing him confessing during an interview that he was an IS supporter.
Officials in Thailand’s Deep South who had dealt with the embassy in Cairo confirmed to BenarNews that the student was Aiproheng Malee, 25.
Aiproheng’s mother, Ya Malee, citing information relayed to her by one of his friends, also identified him as the student who was alluded to in the embassy statement.
“[Egyptian] officials found photos of IS on his cell phone. They forced him to confess, so Aiproheng did,” Ya, a resident of Yala province, told BenarNews on Monday. “I am seeking help from the government, please help him.”
“One of his friends called my husband and me saying Aiproheng was arrested. The friend said Aiproheng has nothing to do with the IS,” said Ya. “He was wrongly accused.”
The Thai embassy in Cairo was trying to gain permission to visit the student to provide legal and consular assistance, said Rear Adm. Somkiat Polprayoon, director of the Southern Province Border Administration Center (SBPAC), which oversees civilian-related matters in the Deep South.
Note: According to Thai officials, IS has no presence in Thailand and Malay-speaking insurgents in the Deep South are fighting for independence, and not for a foreign ideology.
Full story: BenarNews
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