Safety zones to be established in restive South later this month

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Bangkok – Southern border provinces will declare certain areas ‘safety zones’ this month as the region has been plagued with violence and insurgency for over a decade.

Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha said he is hopeful that the establishment of safety zones in the violence-torn region will bring peace, safety, security, and confidence back to the people.

The first area to be declared a violence free zone is Cho-airong district in Narathiwat province.

The government announced in February, that its negotiation team led by General Aksara Kerdphol had reached an agreement with insurgent groups to a ceasefire in the far South and would declare certain districts safety zones.

In order to restore peace and trust, Gen Prayut said it would require cooperation from all sides including members of local communities, adding that dialogue between the government and insurgent groups has been conducted based on trust, sincerity, and the intention to restore peace.