Joint Thai-US military partnership signed


BANGKOK, Nov 16 – Thailand and the US have finally signed a joint vision statement for a new defence alliance between the two countries. 

Thai defence minister Sukumpol Suwanatat said after the signing ceremony with his US counterpart Leon E. Panetta that the 2012 Joint VIsion Statement for the Thai-US Defence Alliance focuses on a partnership for security in Southeast Asia, promotion of stability in the Asia-Pacific region, strengthening of efficiency in bilateral and multilateral operations, and development of cooperation on all levels.

He ruled out any discussion on the highly-criticised request by the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to use Thailand’s U-tapao airport in Sattahip for its atmospheric studies.

NASA made the request once but cancelled its plan in June when the government could not make a decision in time for the mission.

ACM Sukumpol added that Myanmar has been invited to observe the Thai-US Cobra Gold joint military exercise next year after a proposal from Thailand.