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Rebels opposed to peace talks blamed for recent terror attacks

July 03, 2013

BANGKOK, Thailand – Thai Deputy Defence Minister Yuthasak Sasiprapa on Monday (July 1st) blamed recent attacks in the Deep South provinces on an insurgent faction opposed to peace talks between the government and the Barisan Revolusi Nasional (BRN), The Bangkok Post reported.

The group has 2,000 to 3,000 members, Yuthasak said, adding that rebels have generally taken one of three positions towards the peace talks, which began in late March: participate, adopt a wait-and-see attitude, or oppose the talks by carrying out attacks, The Post quoted him as saying.

Likewise, National Security Council (NSC) chief Paradorn Pattanathabut blamed the blast Saturday in Yala's Krong Pinang district that killed eight soldiers on a breakaway group opposed to the peace talks.

Separately, The Nation quoted Charoon Ampa, an adviser to the NSC, as saying that it has been holding secret talks with other separatist groups in addition to the Malaysia-brokered talks with the BRN. He indicated that these covert talks were being conducted without Malaysia's involvement.

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