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Written by DAP NEWS
Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva (pictured) claimed that Thailand has not lost any territory in the disputed Thai-Cambodian border area near Preah Vihear temple, according to Monday’s Bangkok Post.
There have been Thai fears that Bangkok might emerge at a disadvantage in bilateral talks with Phnom Penh.
”The [Thai] prime minister has asked [Thai] Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya to explain to the public today the details of the negotiations framework which was passed by the parliament last week,” the Bangkok Post added.
Koy Kuong, spokesman for the Foreign Affair and International Cooperation, on Monday told DAP News Cambodia that the mistake stems from the fact that Thailand uses its own map in the territorial dispute with Cambodia.
“The real solution is to solve by international map, Thailand should not use its own map,” said Koy Kuong, adding that “It is Thai mistake that Thailand uses its own map to solve the border disputes with Cambodia.”
Abhisit was responding to a complaint by People’s Alliance for Democracy co-leader Sondhi Limthongkul that Thailand had effectively lost the disputed land area to Cambodia.
Speaking on his ASTV channel, Sondhi said the government’s negligence had allowed Cambodian troops to take control of the land.
Abhisit told his weekly TV and radio program on sunday Thailand and Cambodia used different maps with different border demarcations to argue their case.
However, he said an agreement reached between the two countries in 2000, which said border conflict should be solved through negotiation, should apply in the meantime. ‘’It is just not true that the government has neglected the issue or lost any land or sovereignty,’’ the Thai prime minister said. While the border has yet to be agreed neither side should enter the disputed area or use it in ways which affects the other’s rights, he said.
“The 2000 agreement says we need negotiations and, in the meantime, activities in the disputed area that could affect each country’s rights are not allowed,” the Bangkok Post quoted Abhist´s saying.
The disputed land is a 4.6-square-kilometre border area near Cambodia’s Preah Vihear temple.
Cambodian high ranking officials on Friday last week rejected claims from the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) in Thailand that Thailand lost 4.6 square-kilometers to Cambodia. The Cambodian officials stressed that such a stance is not the official line of the Thai Government.
“This claim is not Bangkok government’s stance and [they are] willing to solve the disputes with the Cambodian Government,” Koy Kuong told DAP News Cambodia.
“This protest is from only Thai nationalist group which claimed Cambodia invaded Thailand,” Koy Kuong confirmed. “If the two governments have not solved the problems yet, they cannot claim the lands as belonging to Thailand.”
The Thais “often claim to be encroached upon and envied by Cambodia, but they base [claims] only on their own map, he added.
Va Kimhong, president of the Cambodian Border Committee could not be reached for comment on Friday.
“Thailand should not say that they lost around 4.6 square kilometers of their land in accordance with an international ruling of June 15, 2009,” he has previously told DAP News Cambodia.
“Thailand cannot say as the area and the surroundings of the area do not belong to Cambodia. When they said they lost land, it is not based in reality or evidence.”
Va Kimhong showed disappointment over Thailand’s slow progress in fulfilling vows to demarcate the border.
The People’s Alliance for Democ- racy networks from 16 southern provinces held a public announcement urging the Government to investigate Thailand’s rights to 4.6 square kilometers in the vicinity of the Preah Vihear Temple, in order to prevent the country from losing the disputed land, according to Thai-Asean News Network on Friday.
Although the World Court ruled in 1962 that the 11th century Hindu temple belonged to Cambodia, the most accessible entrance is from northeastern Si Sa Ket province.
Each country uses different ways to demarcate the border line, but Abhisit said this had not compromised Thailand’s position.
Cambodia uses a French colonial map to demarcate the border but Thailand insists its watershed boundaries be used for demarcation based on a map drawn up with US technical assistance.
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PHNOM PENH, Sept. 8 (Xinhua) — Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Hor Namhong (pictured) said on Tuesday that he plans to meet with his American counterpart Hillary Clinton in New York during his stay there.
“So far, both sides have plan to meet to strengthen the bilateral cooperation and relationship between the two countries during I stay there to join the UN General Assembly late this month,” Hor told reporters at his ministry after signing agreements with the U.S. to receive over 34 million U.S. dollars assistance for health and education improvement.
“I and my American counterpart are busy at the U.N. General Assembly but both sides plan to seek appropriate time for talking to deepen the bilateral relationship,” he said, adding that “I have just talked with U.S. Ambassador to Cambodia (Carol A. Rodley) briefing about the time of the bilateral talks.”
Hor Namhong said he plans to leave Cambodia on September 22 for New York to join the U.N. General Assembly.
Since 1999, the U.S. has provided over 250 million U.S. dollars for health and education system improvement in Cambodia. “We highly appreciated with the assistance from the U.S.,” he added.
“The bilateral relationship between the two countries are getting better and better and moving forwards,” Hor Namhong said, citing that “the U.S. sent their Peace Corps to help local Cambodians, lifted Cambodia from trade blacklist and provided military assistance to Cambodian armed forces.” Last week, the U.S. offered over 6.5 million U.S. dollars worth of military equipment and technical assistance to Cambodian Royal Armed Forces.