Thai forces on alert as Muslims remember mosque siege

Security forces in southern Thailand were put on full alert as Muslims remember the anniversary of a mosque siege when more than 100 people died, officials said Sunday.

Thai forces on alert as Muslims remember mosque siege
The alert was ordered after intelligence reports indicated separatist insurgents were planning to stage attacks on the fourth anniversary of the Krue Se mosque siege, said army spokesman Col. Akara Thiprote.

On April, 28, 2004, several hundred young Muslims stormed security outposts and seized the mosque and Thai forces killed 107 Muslims.

For many Muslims, the mosque has become a symbol of the heavy-handed tactics of Thai authorities as they try to suppress an insurgency since early 2004.

The Krue Se incident marked the revival of insurgency in the predominantly Muslim provinces of Yala, Pattani and Narathiwat, which border Malaysia.

Many Thai Muslims say they are treated as second-class citizens in a country where Buddhists are dominant.

The Thai government has attempted to soften its approach with a "hearts and minds" campaign, but daily shootings still occur in the south.

Agencies

Last Mod: 27 Nisan 2008, 17:06
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