Deep South residents are pleading for insurgents to end bombings that make their lives harder and violate Islamic values.
The pleas came after recent bomb attacks on Narathiwat railway bridges stranded thousands of travellers, and bombings in Hat Yai injured at least nine people.
"Consider the effects on poor people"
Blasts severed tracks on a railroad bridge in Tanyong Mat subdistrict, Ra-ngae district and damaged a bridge in Bukit subdistrict of Cho-airong district May 14th.
Ruesoh district resident Maeroh Jehmee told Khabar Southeast Asia the service disruption would make her life more difficult.
"I am poor and just manage to get by selling a small volume of goods, which I source from people on the passing trains," she said. "It makes me so sorry that of the many people who will suffer from these incidents, thousands of families, most are poor people. I would like to plead with those responsible to consider the effects on poor people like myself when considering any future attacks like these."
Thousands of students, vendors and other Deep South residents depend on the two main train lines that serve the area – the Hat Yai-Yala route and the Hat Yai-Sungai Kolok route. The railway disruption followed eight bombings in Sungai Kolok two days earlier.
"The trains are a very important in the way of life of poor people to get around, especially people like me who travel in third class to save money, but without other options we really get hit hard," commuter Useng Hayeemasae said.
"In a way, we were lucky this time that all the damage can be repaired and that there were no injuries. But we have to ask ourselves, who could be held accountable if people had been injured or killed? Who would help support the victims' families?"
The State Railway of Thailand (SRT) hopes to complete repairs and get the entire Hat Yai-Sungai Kolok route back in operation by June 1st.
Local Muslim leaders condemned the May 6th twin bombings in Hat Yai that targeted district police headquarters and injured at least nine people.
"Imam Hadyedend and the other kotep and bilan (religious teachers) here constantly stress peace and non-violence during Friday prayer sessions and sermons," said Sombut Punyapruk, a board member of the Mamudeya Hatyainai Mosque and retired police lieutenant.
The mosque lies at the centre of the Tasapatana Community in Hat Yai Nai, the largest cluster of Muslim homes and businesses in the city. No local Muslims have been linked to the attacks.
"Islam teaches people to be charitable to one another. Some individuals have said Islam is a violent religion, but the truth is that it is a religion that teaches love and unity as its core principle," Hadyedend Patila, the mosque's imam, told Khabar.
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