Special Report: Reconciliation centers push for peace and unity


In response to the roadmap of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) regarding national reconciliation, various relevant agencies have begun to launch programs and activities as part of the national reconciliation efforts. 

In its roadmap, the NCPO wants to achieve national reconciliation as soon as it could– within two to three months’ time if at all possible.

The Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC) has set up Centers of Reconciliation for Reform in both the central and the regional areas of the country. A working group has also been formed to set guidelines for the operations of the centers. The reconciliation process will begin from family units to villages, sub-districts, districts, and provinces.

The NCPO has tasked the ISOC with the responsibility of organizing dialogues between all rivals in order to achieve social harmonization. At the same time, activities and programs aimed at restoring happiness to the people have been held by several agencies.

For instance, concerts have been performed by soldiers, policemen, and civilians at various areas, such as the Victory Monument in Bangkok. Apart from concerts, medical check-ups have also been offered at no charge. The objective is to “return happiness to the people” after lengthy political tensions.

The Government Public Relations Department (PRD) is scheduled to organize a program dubbed “Music in the Park,” starting from 5 June 2014. The program takes place at the park within the compound of the PRD Headquarters in Bangkok every Thursday evening.

Meanwhile, the PRD will establish reconciliation centers in Bangkok and other provinces to provide channels to create better understanding between the people and the military. The department will produce spots, programs, and features to be disseminated through its radio and television networks, as well as websites.

The Ministry of Culture is adjusting its cultural activities to promote national reconciliation. For example, cultural tours and mobile cultural events, to be arranged soon, will include content on reconciliation and unity. Emphasis will be placed on creating awareness and unity among the people. The Ministry of Social Development and Human Security is also preparing activities to rehabilitate society, reduce conflicts, and bring about peace and happiness.

In the meantime, the Ministry of Interior has instructed all provinces to set up reconciliation centers to help create an atmosphere of social harmony and encourage local people to accept different views.

The reason why the NCPO decided to take control of the nation was that the prolonged political deadlock and protests had been massively damaging the nation as a whole. There were also various violent incidents prior to the coup, many of which involved the use of war weapons.

According to the NCPO, when the situation returns to normal and a successful reform and national reconciliation as well as social harmony have been achieved, the country will move towards the next phase– a general election.