PM Yingluck firm on peace, co-existence with Cambodia ahead of Preah Vihear ruling


BANGKOK, Oct 17 – A posture of peace and public order will be maintained on the Thai-Cambodian border no matter what the international court judgement regarding the Preah Vihear temple border dispute will be, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra said today.

Her assurances are overtures to Thailand’s friendly approach to the neighbouring country as the International Court of Justice (ICJ) is scheduled to give its judgement on November 11 in response to a petition by Cambodia to clarify the disputed areas adjacent to the Preah Vihear Temple.

Both countries claim ownership of the region, while the historic Hindu temple itself belongs to Cambodia.

Ms Yingluck said related agencies would give their explanations after the judgement is made but “no matter how the ruling is, we will adhere to peace and both countries must avoid confrontations.”

Natthavudh Photisaro, deputy permanent secretary for foreign affairs, said the premier will meet with security and Foreign Ministry officials next Monday to consider a national mechanism between Thailand and Cambodia.

An ad hoc committee will also be set up to analyse the ICJ’s judgement, he said, adding that the ministry would enhance public relations on the court case early next month.

Nipat Thonglek, permanent secretary for defence, said Ms Yingluck would not need to appear at The Hague to hear the judgement despite her concurrent portfolio as defence minister.

He said the situation would be different from the oral hearing in April when then defence minister Sukumpol Suwanatat was present at the Court with the Thai legal team.

Measures to keep public order along the Thai-Cambodian border during the ICJ’s judgement will be discussed on October 21, he said.