>Thailand, Cambodia to confer on border dispute next week

>Mr. Tharit speaking to the media.

BANGKOK, Nov 3 (TNA) – Border negotiators from Thailand and its neighbour Cambodia will hold a two-day meeting, November 10 and 11, at the Joint Boundary Commission (JBC) level for the first time to resolve border conflict, the Thai foreign ministry announced Monday.

Department of Information director-general Tharit Charungvat, in his capacity as spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said the meeting will be held in Cambodia’s province of Siem Reap.

The meeting is being organised after a joint session of Thailand’s House of Representatives and Senate on October 28 gave the green light to the proposed framework and approved a clear mandate for the JBC to negotiate with Cambodia on talks to settle the disruptive border dispute between the two countries.

Discussions dealing with the short-term problem will focus on avoiding confrontations between soldiers of the two countries at disputed border areas, especially in the vicinity of the ancient Preah Vihear temple which was the scene of the latest clash on October 15.

Mr. Tharit said foreign ministers of the two countries will meet on Nov. 12 also in Siem Reap to discuss border conflict between the two countries.

Both men may also confer on Ta Muen Thom and Ta Kwai temple ruins, two other disputed sites which sit on border of the two countries, said Mr. Tharit.

He said officials of the two countries may discuss troop reductions before or during the next week’s JBC meeting.

Border demarcation between the two countries has never been fully implemented due to landmines planted along the border during decades of war inside Cambodia.

Cambodia uses a French colonial map to demarcate the border, which Thailand says favours Cambodia. Thailand relies on a map drawn up later with US technical assistance, which Cambodia says favours Thailand. (TNA)

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