For immediate release on 19 June 2012
Attacking military guards in school condemned,
all armed violence should be stopped
State urged to ensure disarmament and no more military bases in schools and temples
As reported by Issara News, on Saturday 16 June 2012, around 17.20, an unknown number of perpetrators threw M67 grenades into school guard unit of the Rifle Company 1413 under the Yala Taskforce 13 based in the compound of Ban Talo Zumae School, Moo4, Ban Kiyao, Kong Penang Sub-district, Kong Penang District, Yala Province. As a result, three security officers were found dead and six injuries. Though the incidence happened on a public holiday, however the school compound should be safe and free from armed fighting to serve any political purposes at all time. Security personnel and units shall no longer use public places such as schools or temples as their military or armed units.
“The attack against the military based in school is condemned since it is a public space and should be safe. Educational personnel and students are vulnerable to become victims of armed violence. The armed insurgents have committed heinous violence without considering losses of life and property and it was such an inhumane action” said Pornpen Khongkachonkiet, Cross-Cultural Foundation (CrCF), Director.
CrCF would like to offer our deepest condolence for the loss of life and injuries among military personnel. Master Sergeant First Class Chawanakorn Wongtra, 44 years, Lance Corporal Sombat Naimatam, 24 years from Yala, and Private Anond Harnkitudomsuk, have lost their lives. And Corporal Komsant Jaipinta, 26 years, Corporal Nuttapong Suathajit, 30 years, Private Ekkaphon Khamdaeng, 23 years, Private Saharath Jaitang, 23 years, Private Paisit Chantharasuk, 23 years and Private Pipat Ratanasathien, 23 years, have been injured.
Situation in the Deep South of Thailand is still tense and unrest has been continuing unabated. Amidst the armed violence, space for democracy and respect of human life shall not emerge. Meanwhile, the enforcement of special law and massive arrest and suppression may not help to put an end to the violence.
Apart from relying on political negotiation to resolve armed conflicts, the government should exercise power of all its agencies to mobilize for disarmament of both legal and illegal weapons and the licensees for private possession of firearms should be curbed since small firearms and small war weapons have often been used to cause the loss lives of civilians and officials on a daily basis. In addition, security agencies and personnel shall not use public places such as school and temple as their military bases or bases for any armed operational units. It should help to minimize risk of attack on innocent people including children and youth and general public who have to use those public facilities.
For more information, please contact Pornpen Khongkachonkiet, Cross-Cultural Foundation (CrCF), phone 02-6934939