Thai Army Chief and Deputy Defence Minister Udomdej Sitabutr said on December 2 that the authorities have controlled the overall situation in the Deep South, which saw a series of arson and bomb attacks recently.

He said that some insurgent groups tried to stir up unrest whenever the government makes headway in restoring peace in the region.

The situation here will improve after more development projects that cater to the needs of local people are introduced next year, he added.

He also affirmed that clashes will not affect efforts to resume peace talks between the Government and southern Muslim insurgents.

During a recent visit to Malaysia, the only country to play an intermediary role in the talks, Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha and his Malaysian counterpart Najib Razak agreed to continue cooperation in the peace process in the south.

This month, General Aksara Kerdpol, head of the negotiation delegation of the Thai Government, will meet with the Malaysian side on preparations for a new round of negotiations.

Thailand's Deep South, including three border provinces which are home to the majority of Muslims, has been plagued with violence since January 2004.

According to the Thai army, over the past decade, violence in the south has claimed the lives of about 6,000 people and injured 10,600 others.-VNA