Government Condemns Thai Activist’s Plans To Uproot Posts

Government officials reacted strongly yesterday to outspoken Thai nationalist Veera Somkwam­kid who reportedly has plans to remove temporary Thai-Cambo­dian border posts near Ta Moan Toch temple in Oddar Meanchey province this coming Sunday.

Several news organizations have reported that Mr Somkwamkid told Thailand’s Matichon newspaper on April 16 that he planned to march to the border area on May 2 and uproot border posts.

CPP lawmaker Cheam Yeap told the National Assem­bly yesterday that he had heard about Mr Somk­wamkid’s plans. “I request that the Assembly president, the government and the lawmakers condemn these Thai inva­ders,” Mr Yeap said of reports to protest at the temple.

“We have complained to…stop him and others from invading Cam­bo­dian territory [through] the Thai Em­bassy in Cambodia,” he said.

Mr Somkwamkid, a member of the Thai People’s Alliance for Demo­cracy, could not be contacted yesterday to confirm whether he still planned to uproot the border posts.

Last week, Cambodian and Thai troops clashed at the border in Od­dar Meanchey province.

RCAF spokesman Lieutenant General Chhum Sucheat said yesterday that the military was prepared to stop Mr Somkwamkid if he tried to uproot the border posts near Ta Moan Toch temple.

“There is a temporary border marker on the Thai side and a border marker on the Cambodian side,” Lt Gen Sucheat said. “If [Mr Somk­wam­kid and his group] destroy the border marker on the Thai side, then that is OK…. [But] if they move in and try and up­root the border pillar on the Cambo­dian side, the authorities will be forced to stop them,” he said.

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