Foreign Affairs clarifies Thai-Cambodian border tension to international communities

October 16th, 2008 - 9:20 am ICT by Amrit Rashmisrisethi  

Preah VihearThe Ministry of Foreign Affairs has distributed memorandums on the Thai-Cambodian border tension to foreign countries. Permanent Secretary for Foreign Affairs Virasakdi Futrakul (วีระศักดิ์ ฟูตระกูล) says Thailand is ready to clarify the situation at the conflict area in any forum.

The permanent secretary reports that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has explained the Thai-Cambodian border dispute to member countries of the Association of the Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and permanent members to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). The ministry has also assigned Thai embassies worldwide to clarify Thailand’s stance on the situation to the governments of all countries if Cambodia files a petition with the UNSC for its intervention.

The latest news reports that three permanent members of the UNSC, including the U.S., China, and Russia, have voiced their support for the use of bilateral mechanism to tackle the conflict at Preah Vihear. However, the permanent secretary says Thailand will hire an international legal consult if Cambodia brings the case to the International Court of Justice.

Mr Virasakdi states further that Cambodia’s goal is that Thailand withdraws all military personnel from Preah Vihear and the area along the border there and accepts Cambodia’s map drawn by France.

Since the government of Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont, Thailand has stood firm that the Preah Vihear verdict by the International Court of Justice grants the temple to Cambodia but not approves the demarcation of the overlapping area in line with the map. The permanent secretary therefore says Thailand and Cambodia must settle the demarcation issue by themselves, adding that Thailand does not want to request the UN to help resolve the conflict as it sticks to bilateral means. He also expresses his belief that a mediator cannot end the dispute between the two countries.

Source : National News Bureau, Public Relations Department of Thailand

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