THAI DPM ADMITS DAESH MAY HAVE ATTEMPTED TO ESTABLISH NETWORKS IN SOUTHERN THAILAND

BANGKOK, Thailand April 19 (NNN-Bernama) Thai authorities admit that there is a possibility that Daesh terrorist group has attempted to establish networks in southern Thailand as what they have done in other regional countries.

However, attempts by Daesh to establish terror cells in the country's southern provinces have been foiled.

There might be attempt to enter (set up networks in southern Thailand) but we have always prevented it, said Thai Deputy Prime Minister Gen Prawit Wongsuwan yesterday.

While affirming that the government was fully aware of certain quarters' tendency to establish Daesh's footprint in Thailand, he said the security agencies would closely monitor the situation to prevent the terrorist group from gaining any foothold in the country, especially in the south where armed conflict raged since 2004.

Prawit, who is also the Defence Minister and minister in charge of internal affairs, was questioned about a Thai national wanted by the Malaysian police for his alleged link to Daesh.

Malaysian police were still hunting for a Thai man Awae Wae-eya, 37, from Cho Airong in Narathiwat, along with three Malaysians Nor Farkhan Mohd Isa, 31, from Skudai, Johor; and Muhamad Hanafi Yah, 51, and Muhamad Faizal Muhamad Hanafi, 29, from Kampung Ketil, Pengkalan Kubor.

According to a statement by the Inspector-General of Police Fuzi Harun, the four fugitives were presumed dangerous.

Meanwhile, secretary-general for the National Security Council (NSC) Gen Wanlop Raksanor played down the role the wanted Thai man had with Daesh or its regional branch, saying that he was just a keyboard warrior for the terrorist group.

He nevertheless confirmed that the man was a Thai national.

He would follow Daesh from the internet or Facebook. He was a kind of person who supported and liked the idea of Daesh but not a hardcore supporter, he told Bernama when contacted yesterday.

In PATTANI, a spokesman for the Fourth Army Region, Col Pramote Prom-in in a media conference at an army camp here, concurred with Wanlop's assessment of the wanted Thai man.

He said based on their investigation, the Cho Airong native did not have any link to the terror group, but liked to project his alleged link to Daesh in social media.

He (Awae) just liked to show off of his alleged involvement (with Daesh) in social media, he said, adding that Daesh had never set its foot or have any operations in southern Thailand.

Source: NAM News Network