Key historical dates:




Independent sultanate of Patani, comprising the present-day provinces of Patani, Yala, Narathiwat, and parts of Songkhla, ended when the

Kingdom of
Siam formally incorporated the sultanate.




Anglo-Siamese Treaty recognized Siamese control over Patani and drew a border between Patani and the Malay states of Kelantan, Perak, Kedah and Perlis. The local aristocracy was deposed in favour of officials who spoke only Thai and reported exclusively and directly to




Constitutional monarchy was introduced with a parliamentary government.




Regime of Phibun Songkhram came to power and it followed a policy of forced assimilation into mainstream ‘Buddhist Thainess’ aimed at creating the monolithic character of the state.




Emergence of Patani People’s Movement (PPM), a separatist movement fighting for an independent Patani





250,000 Thai Malays petitioned the UN to oversee the accession of Patani, Narathiwat and Yala to the new Federation of Malaya.



28 April 1948


Dusun-nyor riot: clashes between Muslim villagers and police and military forces, led by religious leader, Haji Abdul Rahman, resulted in the deaths of some 400 Muslims, thousands more fled to Malaysia





Expansion of Malay resistance was accelerated by formation in Malaya of the Gabungam Melayu Patani Raya (GAMPAR, the Greater Patani Malayu Association), an organization set up to incorporate Thailand’s four majority Muslim provinces into Malaya and the Patani People’s Movement, a Thailand-based organization with the same goal.




The first group to organize armed resistance in the south, Barisan Nasional Pembebasan Patani (Patani National Liberation Front) / Barisan Islam Pembebasan Patani (Patani Islamic Liberation Front) was founded.




Barisan Revolusi Nasional-Coordinate was established to fight for an independent Patani state. Thought to be the largest and best organized of the armed groups, it is focused on political organizing and recruitment within Islamic schools.




Patani United Liberation Organization (PULO) formed and becomes the largest and most effective of the separatist movements during the next two decades.




Guerilla activity increased and, in response, the government launched military operations.


29 November 1975


Thai marines allegedly murdered five Muslim youths in Bacho district of Narathiwat. The incident led to the emergence of several small Islamist militias and unleashed the most intensive violence yet seen which led to the declaration by the government of a state of emergency.


20 January 1981


Southern Border Provinces Administrative Center (SBPAC) established as part of a new government strategy emphasizing enhanced public participation, economic development and a broad amnesty signaling a shift from confrontation to negotiation. Over the 1980s and 1990s, violence dropped significantly.



August 1997


New tactical alliance under umbrella group known as Bersatu was formed by PULO, BRN and GMIP



24 December 2001


A new round of violence opened with five-well coordinated attacks on police posts in Patani, Yala and Narathiwat that left five officers and a village defense volunteer dead.



May 2002


SBPAC abolished under Thaksin Shinawatra.



4 January 2004


Attack of the 4th Development Division in a military camp of Joh-I Rong district, Narathiwat province; 22 schools and patrol outposts set on fire by insurgents. Five suspects confessed but it was later revealed that they were tortured.



12 March 2004


The suspects’ lawyer, Somchai Neelaphaijit, disappeared in mysterious circumstances the day after he called for an investigation into the torture of the suspects.




28 April 2004


Kru Se Massacre: involved synchronized attacks on eleven police posts and army checkpoints and ended in a bloody showdown at the Kru Se Mosque when Thai army gunned down 32 men inside. By the end of the day, 105 militants, one civilian and five members of the security forces were dead.


25 October 2004


Tak Bai Incident: began with a demonstration outside a police station and ended with the deaths of at least 85 Muslim men and boys, most from suffocation after arrest as a result of being stacked five and six deep in army trucks for transport to an army base


19 July 2005


PM Shinawatra enacted Emergency Decree in order to manage the three troubled provinces.



May 2005


National Reconciliation Commission formed by PM Shinawatra in order to analyse the conflict and recommend policies, measures and mechanisms to spur reconciliation and peace in Thai society.



1 September 2005


131 Thai Muslims cross into
Malaysia to seek refuge after 3 near-simultaneous bomb explosions.



6June 2006


Report of the National Reconciliation Commission submitted (


19 September 2006




Ouster of Thaksin Shinawatra through coup d’etat




1 November 2006


Newly appointed PM Surayud Chulanont publicly apologizes for atrocities committed under the previous administration, especially regarding the Tak Bai incident. Tak Bai protesters on trial are being released and case is dismissed.