World Islamic body nods to Thailand’s tackling of southern violence


BANGKOK, Feb 8 – The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has responded positively to Thailand’s successive solutions to the long-standing violence in three southernmost provinces and offered to support the kingdom in solving the problem constructively, a Foreign Ministry spokesman said today.

Foreign Ministry Information Department Director-General Manasvi Srisodapol said the OIC’s latest reaction was made during the 12th OIC meeting in Cairo, Egypt, on Wednesday and Thursday.

Thailand’s ambassador to Cairo, Chalit Manityakul, represented the kingdom in attending the meeting as an observer.

Mr Manasvi said feedback on Thailand regarding the chronic problem in Thailand’s Muslim-predominant provinces in the far South was positive while the OIC secretary general was asked to assist Thailand in tackling the issue.

The spokesman said the Thai Foreign Ministry was satisfied with the constructive cooperation on the part of the OIC which described Thailand’s performance as beneficial to cooperation in solving the problem in the future and to Thai Muslims in the South.

The positive attitude was partly due to visits by Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra to some OIC member countries such as Bahrain, Qatar and Kuwait, Mr Manasvee said, adding that a field trip by Bangkok-based diplomats of the OIC countries to the far South last week was useful in creating a better understanding among them.

On the government’s plan to impose a curfew in some southern provinces, the ministry spokesman said the curfew will not affect the OIC viewpoint on Thailand as they understand the situation.

“People worldwide condemn the use of violence against innocent people. However, the government must clearly explain to the people and the outside world if [the curfew] enforced,” he said. (MCOT online news)