A group of Muslim migrants from Cambodia were captured on their way to the southern region of Thailand, apparently in an effort to join up with Muslim extremists who are conducting open violence against Thai authorities. The men claimed they were merely seeking work.
Southern Thailand is predominantly Muslim and historically this area has been at peace with the majority Buddhist population. However, failure on the part of the Siamese government to provide economic support and respect the integrity of southern Muslims has resulted in open hostilities. The introduction of Cambodian Muslims adds another potential spark to what may well become another area in which radical groups such as Al-Aqeda gain prominence. The southern region needs some sort of local autonomy as well as economic assistance if extremists are to be defeated. But, the attention of America is in the Middle East rather than dealing with terrorists who can be defeated prior to gaining strength.
Bangkok Post June 6, 2007 “Police Caught Group of Muslims Headed South”