Monday, September 14, 2009

Political conflict in Southern Thailand


For this time entries, i would like to share about some information on some political conflict in Southern Thai, what basically issue that lead to conflict. I write this issue not only for increase awareness per se, but also to help our Muslim community there. My writing is inspired by somebody who give a speech on Southern Thai issue in Masjid Negara. I hope that with this information could open our eyes and ears to be more emphathy for Global Muslim issue, InsyaALLAH..

The basic features of Political conflict and dimension in Sothern Thailand is regarding the separatism issue. Southern Thai related with Malays in the sense of ethnicity and geographically which southern Thai consist of Narathiwat, Songkla, Satun and Yala. Most of the community in the provinces can speak Kelantanese dialect except for Satun which use Kedah dialect. Religion practices in Southern Thai is Islam and the core business of the emergence of the conflict is regarding the nation issue in Thai where only this aspect are different in application of the nation identification. Thai nationalistic terminology is adjective and have problem because it relate it with religion aspect. Malay in Thai didn’t recognize themselves as Thai Muslim and this is contradicted with the nationalism. The major political conflict in Southern Thai is in the case of Pattani. The Great Pattani had been an independent kingdom, however, in 1786, the Muslim dynasty was abolished when it was conquered by the King of Siam. The effort of the Siamese government to subjugate the Muslim area began immediately after its occupation. Thai government attempt to integrate Pattani Muslim into larger Thailand and they create serious resentment among them. As a result, Muslim in Pattani hoped to gain an autonomous status, if not complete independence.

Based on political situation in southern Thai, basically what I see is that the liberation Movement poses a goal which is they aim to establishing Dar Al- Islam or Islamic state as they historically had. For them, the main ultimate objective is to either gain autonomy or the complete liberation of their homeland. In southern Thai, all the organization like BNPP, BRN and PULO considered Thai government as internal colonial power with which compromise was impossible. The only way to independence of Pattani through armed struggle and therefore all fronts continued their guerrilla activities which made violent clashes between the government military forces and the guerrillas frequently occurred. However, the institution strength and mass mobilization of Thailand was considered weak. All the revolutionary organization in Pattani seems to be struggle between each other rather than fighting against the government. In additional to this, the Muslim in Pattani has failed to mobilize support both internally and externally. Besides that, they failed to draw the serious attention of the ASEAN countries. Not only that, internationally, also the Pattani Muslims have failed to draw support of the OIC countries. Thus, it makes them difficulty to deal and settle with the issue.

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