Thailand

The information below is based on the Report of the Secretary-General to the Security Council (A/67/845–S/2013/245) issued on 15 May 2013.

In 2012, efforts were made by the Government to protect children, who nevertheless continued to be victims of indiscriminate attacks by armed groups in the southern border provinces of Thailand: Yala, Pattani, Narathiwat and Songkhla. As a result of those attacks, which included drive-by shootings and bombings in crowded public places, 5 children were reportedly killed and at least 48 injured during the reporting period. In one instance, an 11-month-old boy was killed and a 10-month-old boy injured during a drive-by shooting at a tea house in Rangae district, Narathiwat Province, on 11 December 2012. The coordinated bomb attacks in Yala and Hat Yai of 31 March 2012 injured more than 300 civilians, including at least 16 children. The Government is investigating the incidents.

During the reporting period, armed groups also continued to carry out targeted attacks against schools and teachers. In 2012, at least 11 schools were partially damaged or destroyed in arson attacks or attacks with improvised explosive devices. On 24 September 2012, a bomb exploded at the entrance of Batu Mitrapap 66 School in Bacho district, Narathiwat Province, injuring two school directors. In another incident, Bang Maruat School in Panare district, Pattani Province, was burned down by militants on 29 November 2012. In addition, 11 incidents of targeted attacks were documented in 2012, resulting in the killing of six teachers and the injuring of eight others, with a worrisome spike in the final quarter of 2012. On 22 November 2012, the director of the Tha Kam Cham School in Nong Chik district, Pattani Province, was killed. As a result, the Confederation of Teachers of Southern Border Provinces closed 332 schools in the region for 10 days. On 11 December 2012, militants entered Ban Ba Ngo School in Mayo district, Pattani Province, and killed the school director and a teacher in front of the children. Some 1,200 government-run schools serving more than 200,000 schoolchildren in the four provinces were closed again for two days for security reasons. In those incidents, military personnel were also victims of the attacks. Since the attacks, the Government has stepped up investigations and boosted security measures.

Concern remained over the issue of informal association of children with village defence militias (Chor Ror Bor), who allegedly carry out duties similar to formal adult members. In this regard, the Government put in place clear regulations on the non-recruitment of children under the age of 18 years by those militias and sent reminders to all provinces to adhere to the provisions of the policy. The involvement of children in armed forces and armed groups remains to be explicitly criminalized in national legislation. The Government is amending the Child Protection Act of 2003 to explicitly criminalize the involvement of children with armed forces and armed groups.