BANGKOK, July 2 — Ministry of Foreign Affairs permanent secretary Sihasak Phuangketkeow insisted there was no special condition for Cambodia to release Thai activist Veera Somkwamkid.
Mr Sihasak,acting minister of foreign affairs, said there was no exchange of favours involved in Mr Veera’s release.
He believes it will be beneficial to Thai-Cambodian relations and he will write to officially extend gratitude towards the neighboring country.
Mr Sihasak said that his recent visit to Cambodia was successful as he had chances to explain situations in Thailand to Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen and Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister/Foreign Minister Hor Namhong and to request the release of Mr Veera who had been imprisoned in Cambodia for quite a long period.
He said that the release was the sole decision of Cambodia, that it made Thai people happy and would benefit Thai-Cambodian relations.
“I confirm that the Mr Veera’s release was not made with any favour being sought in return. I admit that there must be cooperation on alien labor solutions because it is important to the economy and security of Thailand. However, the Ministry (of Foreign Affairs) will draft a letter to officially express gratitude to Cambodia. The letter will be proposed to the chief of the NCPO (National Council for Peace and Order) for consideration before being further handled through a diplomatic channel,” Mr Sihasak said.
He also said that both Mr Hun Sen and Mr Hor Namhong understood Thailand’s regulation of alien workers and supported their registration.
“Cambodia raised (the issue of) the arrest of 14 Cambodian workers who had used counterfeit visas as they had been deceived by a job placement firm and it sought Thailand’s assistance. I promised to check out the issue right away to ensure justice for the 14 workers whom I have learned were arrested in Sa Kaeo province,” Mr Sihasak said.