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PM refuses to recognise any separatist South group

Apr 29. 2016
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By The Nation

PRIME Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said Friday his government would not grant recognition to the South’s MARA Patani group even as his chief negotiator maintained the peace process was still going on.

“Why do we have to accept their terms and conditions to recognise them?” Prayut told reporters. “Who really cares about them?”

Aksara Kerdphol, chief of the Thai delegation engaged in talks with the MARA group, rejected earlier news reports that the talks in Malaysia a few days ago had failed.

The MARA Patani claims it is an umbrella group of Patani Malay separatist organisations.

The confidence-building process between Thai authorities and the Muslim group continues, but it would take time as the two parties had serious differences, Aksara said.

“The difference is that they want to have the minutes of the joint agreement but we cannot agree, as they do not have any formal status,” he said.

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