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Emergency Decree Extended in Thailand’s Deep South after Insurgent Bombings

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BANGKOK – Thailand’s government emergency situation committee headed up by Gen. Prawit Wongsuwon has extended the imposition of the emergency decree on public administration in emergency situations in three southern border provinces for three months from June 20 to Sept 19.

The committee headed by Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Prawit Wongsuwon resolved to extend the decree imposition in Narathiwat, Pattani and Yala provinces except in Mae Lan district of Pattani, Sukhirin and Sungai Kolok districts of Narathiwat and Betong district of Yala.

The executive decree has been used to facilitate security operations in the deep South.

Besides, the committee agreed in principle to amend the internal security operations law to boost law enforcement in southern border provinces, reduce areas under the power of the executive decree on public administration in emergency situations, support local economic development and improve the national image.

The Internal Security Operations Command will work out the amendment.

Investigators inspect the wreckage of a motorcycle after a bomb blast in a flea market in the southern Thai province of Pattani on Monday.

Meanwhile, Junta Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-o-cha and people in Thailand’s troubled Deep South condemned a bombing that killed two civilians, including a 14-year-old boy, and wounded 23 others at a Pattani province market as locals in the mainly Muslim border region were shopping for Ramadan on Monday.

Authorities suspect that separatist insurgents were behind the attack, which occurred before nightfall at the Bo Thong market in Pattani’s Nong Chik district. Four of the wounded were soldiers, officials said.

The bombers intended to harm a crowd of shoppers who were buying food with which to break their daily fast during the Islamic holy month, officials said, alleging that the act was also done to retaliate for the killing of a rebel commander by government security forces earlier on Monday.