58 Cambodian NGOs denounce a planned uprooting of border posts by Thai ultra-nationalists, while Cambodian Army warned of armed crackdown

PAD clash near Preah vihear temple in 2009 (AP)
Saturday, 24 April 2010
By Khmerization
Sources: RFA, RFI and Koh Santepheap

58 Cambodian NGOs have released a statement denouncing a group of Thai ultra-nationalists who planned to march to the border and uprooting border posts near Ta Moan Toch temple in Oddar Meanchey province, report Radio Free Asia and other local media.

Reaksmey Kampuchea newspaper recently quoted Thai Matichon newspaper as reported on 16th April that a small group of Thai ultra-nationalists, led by the firebrand Veera Somkwamkid, will march to border area to uproot border posts near Ta Moan Toch temple from 2-3 May.

Radio France Internationale reports that the 58 NGOs include Cambodian-Asean Civil Society, Federation of Cambodian Human Rights and Development, Cambodian-Asean Youth Association, Cambodian Chamber of Union Alliance and Cambodian-Asean Human Rights Association, as well as Cambodian Independent Teachers Association and Cambodian Watchdog Council headed by Mr. Rong Chhun.

Mr. Som Aun, chairman of Cambodian-Asean Civil Society, has called on the Thai government to take measures to stop the actions of these Thai ultra-nationalists. "All of us denounce the [planned] action by Veera Somkwamkid and his group who don't know the history. Secondly, we ask the Thai government to take concrete measures to sop this small group of Thai ultra-nationalists from travelling to uproot the border posts", he declared.

Mr. Rong Chhun, president of Cambodian Independent Teachers Association (CITA) and Cambodian Watchdog Council (CWC), declared on Thursday that he'll lead a mass demonstration against the Thai inveasion on 15th July.

Mr. Suwat Kao-Suk, advisor to the Thai Embassy, said he had heard the news of Mr. Veera Somkwamkid's plan through the Thai media, but declined to comment further as he needs to check the accuracy of the reports first.

Mr. Tith Sothea, spokesman for the Cambodian Press and Quick Reaction Unit, also strongly denounce the planned action of the Thai ultra-nationalists. "We resolutely denounce [the action] and we ask the Thai government led by Prime Minister Abhisit to take measures to stop the action of this group of Thai ultra-nationalists from creating anarchy as it is also violating international laws", he said.

Gen. Chea Dara, Cambodian top commander in charge of Ta Moan area, was quoted by Koh Santepheap newspaper as having strongly warned that the Cambodian armed forces resolutely opposed the action of the Thai ultra-nationalists and will use force to crack down if Mr.Veera Somkwamkid and his group carry out their threat of uprooting the border posts.

Border post number 23, located near Ta Moan Toch temple, was planted by Franco-Siamese Border Commission in 1908. However, the original post was missing and the present Cambodian-Thai Border Commission planted new temporary posts in 2000, while waiting for the original post to be found. According to documents left by the Franco-Siamese Border Commission concerning about border delimitation titled "A Track Toward the Ta Moan Temples" dated 30th December 1908, they stated clearly that all the Ta Moan temples (Ta Moan Thom, Ta Moan Toch, Ta Krabey...) are located inside Cambodian territory, of which their locations contained inside the Annex Map I used by the International Court of Justice in reaching its verdict in 1962 which adjudicated to give ownership of Preah Vihear temple to Cambodia.

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