Thailand, Cambodia to follow up ‘success’

July 31, 2008 at 3:31 am Leave a comment

NSC asked to support border agreement

Bangkok Post – July 31, 2008

THANIDA TANSUBHAPOL & WASSANA NANUAM

The National Security Council (NSC) is to meet with other agencies to follow up on agreements made at the assembly in Siem Reap on the border conflict between Thailand and Cambodia. 

But no date for the talks has yet been set, according to Foreign Ministry spokesman Tharit Charungvat. 

The Foreign Ministry yesterday invited 11 Bangkok-based diplomats whose countries are members of the United Nations Security Council and envoys of nine members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to a briefing on the outcome of the Siem Reap meeting last Monday between Foreign Minister Tej Bunnag and Cambodian Foreign Minister Hor Namhong. 

Cambodian ambassador to Thailand Ung Sean reported the meeting’s outcomes to other envoys. 

The briefing was aimed at convincing Security Council members to back efforts by the two countries to resolve the border row over 4.6 sq km of overlapping territory between Kantharalak district in Si Sa Ket province and the Cambodian province of Preah Vihear. 

Thailand and Cambodia agreed to reduce the number of troops in the area as a step towards a military withdrawal, to hold a meeting of the Joint Boundary Commission (JBC) to demarcate the border line, to clear landmines around Preah Vihear temple and to seek to avoid armed confrontation. 

Thailand’s deputy foreign minister co-chairs the JBC, together with Cambodia’s Senior Minister Var Kim Hong, who is in charge of border affairs. 

But there is no deputy foreign minister, and that could delay the meeting. 

”There might be a problem in Thailand resuming JBC talks, as it does not have a deputy foreign minister to lead the meeting,” Mr Tharit admitted. 

Supreme commander Gen Boonsrang Niempradit said the Foreign Ministry was the key agency in solving the problem with Cambodia and the armed forces would support its efforts. 

With the proclaimed success of the talks in Siem Reap, Gen Boonsrang indicated that there was no need for another meeting of the Thai-Cambodian General Border Committee, which is chaired by the respective defence ministers, in the near future.

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Entry filed under: Preah Vihear Issue. Tags: .

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