Home > Local News > Thailand stands firm; Preah Vihear management plan should be deferred

Thailand stands firm; Preah Vihear management plan should be deferred

BANGKOK, June 15 – Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva on Wednesday reasserted Thailand’s stance that consideration of Cambodia’s proposed management plan of the area surrounding the ancient Hindu temple of Preah Vihear should be deferred by the upcoming UNESCO World Heritage Committee (WHC) meeting in Paris.

The Thai prime minister stood firm as the Thai delegation, scheduled to depart Bangkok for the World Heritage Committee meeting in the French capital this weekend, reported the Thai position over the matter to a special meeting of the Cabinet on Wednesday.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Mr Abhisit said Thailand’s position is that consideration of Cambodia’s management plan of the area surrounding Preah Vihear temple should be deferred, but Thailand stands ready to jointly consider it with Cambodia on the condition that Cambodia must withdraw its troops from the contested land first.

Following reported remarks by Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen that any Thai official intruding Cambodian territory will be arrested, Mr Abhisit said that law of each country must be respected and refrain from doing thing that will adversely affect bilateral relations.

Thai Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Suwit Khunkitti, as head of the Thai delegation in the 35th session from June 19-29, and his team is set to leave Bangkok for Paris on Friday.

Discussion of the Cambodian plan was deferred last year at the WHC meeting in Brazil after Thailand strongly opposed it, citing the unresolved border dispute.

In 1962, the International Court of Justice awarded the temple to Cambodia.

The site of the historic structure on the disputed Thai-Cambodian border has long been a point of contention between the two Asian neighbours.

On July 7, 2008, Preah Vihear temple was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. Under the terms of the listing, Cambodia is required to submit a management plan for WHC approval. (MCOT online news)

Categories: Local News
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