Thailand's Prime Minister Prayut Chan-O-Cha gestures as he reads a statement at a press conference during a visit to the Malacanang Palace in Manila on August 28, 2015. AFP PHOTO/TED ALJIBE
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Thailand's junta chief Thursday played down the idea of greater autonomy for the country's Muslim-majority south, a key demand of rebels who have fought the state for 12 years.Prayut Chan-O-Cha's military government, which came to power through a 2014 coup, has said it is ready to talk with insurgents but has failed to launch full-scale negotiations or drastically curb violence. "Don't ask about governance ... in terms of development the (central) government can provide everything," Prayut told reporters, adding the conflict was making him "moody".His comments refer to the issue of greater autonomy for the area, one of the few demands made public by the shadowy rebel groups.
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