Chalerm: New centre to take complaints on southern arrest warrants

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BANGKOK, April 25 – Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yubamrung said an ad hoc centre has been set up in Thailand’s deep South to receive public complaints on alleged abuse by the authorities.

Southern residents who charged government officials with unfairly issuing arrest warrants for them are encouraged to file their complaints with the centre and directly to him, he said.

They can also choose to meet with officials of the Southern Border Provinces Administration Centre, he said.

He was responding to complaints by some Muslim Thais in Thailand’s three southern border provinces who said the authorities had unfairly and mistakenly issued arrest warrants for their offspring and other relatives.

Mr Chalerm said he would consider the allegations insubstantial if complainants fail to show up in the next 90 days.

He said he would be willing to revoke the emergency decree in certain areas in the South if requested.

A large batch of volunteers will be dispatched to the South soon for reinforcement, he said.

The deputy premier said security officials have been instructed to be on special alert on Sunday which marks the ninth anniversary of the Krue Se incident and next week when a Thai security team resumes a peace dialogue with Barisan Revolusi Nasional (BRN) leaders in Kuala Lumpur on Monday.

In Yala province, police reported that three men on a pick-up truck fire at a group of people, including a village headman, who were repairing the sewage system near a mosque in Budi subdistrict on Wednesday.

No one was killed or wounded.