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1,000 red-shirts enter Cambodia

Bangkokpost,23/09/2011

More than 1,000 red-shirt supporters passed through an immigration checkpoint in Sa Kaeo’s Aranyaprathet district to enter Cambodia on Friday, reportedly planning to attend tomorrow’s friendly footmatch between Thai and Cambodian lawmakers.

The atmosphere at the checkpoint was lively, with a large group of United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship supporters singing and dancing, reports said.

Many of them were carrying images of fugitive former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra and Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen.

There were signs saying “Thaksin, We Miss You”, “We Love Hun Sen” and “We Love Cambodia”.

Reports said the UDD supporters were travelling by public and private buses and personal vehicles.

In Cambodia’s Poipet, opposite of Sa Kaeo, Prime Minister Hun Sen had sent more than 50 air-conditioned buses to pick up the red-shirts, a Cambodian official who refused to give his name said.

He said the Cambodian premier had ordered Poipet officials to look after the red-shirts and not to let them lose a single drop of blood while they are in the country.

The red-shirts were believed planning to attend tomorrow’s friendly football match between Cambodian government officials and Pheu Thai Party MPs and red-shirt leaders aimed at improving Thai-Cambodian relations and cooperation.

Earlier today, Defence Minister Yutthasak Sasiprapa left for Phnom Penh for an official visit to Cambodia at the invitation of Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Tea Banh.

Gen Yutthasak said before leaving that his visit was aimed at strengthening ties between the two countries and paving way for a meeting of the General Border Committee to settle the border dispute between Thailand and Cambodia.

“If everything is ready, the GBC meeting will be held immediately. I insist that there will be no hidden agenda or any vested interest during the meeting,” he said.

Meanwhile, Thai-Cambodian Joint Boundary Committee chairman Asda Chaiyanam and JBC adviser Veerachai Plasai are the state officials to be relieved of their posts by the Yingluck administration.

The two were trusted by the preceding Democrat-led government in dealing with the conflict of the overlapping border near Preah Vihear temple, the Hindu ruins listed as a world heritage site.

Mr Asda, former Thai ambassador to the United Nations, is being replaced by Bandit Sotthiphalarit, a former ambassador to many countries, while Mr Veerachai, Thailand’s ambassador to the Hague in the Netherlands, and JBC adviser Chatri Archjananun, chief of Foreign Ministry’s Legal Affairs Division, will be succeeded by Prasat Prasatwinitchai, Thai ambassador in Manila, and Natthawut Phothisaro, Thai ambassador in Tel Aviv.

Mr Veerachai represented Thailand during the hearings in the International Court of Justice in the legal conflict over the Thai-Cambodian border in the Hague in late May this year.

Opposition Leader Abhisit Vejjajiva said the government has a right to restructure, but he wants it to maintain the existing team working on the legal battle in the world court.

Personally, Mr Abhisit said, he wanted Mr Asda to continue to chair the Thai team because he had not caved in to Cambodia’s demands when performing his duty.

 

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Written by Kham

23/09/2011 at 7:08 pm

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