Thailand Satisfied with the International Court of Justice’s Order Concerning the Provisional Demilitarized Zone (20/07/2011)
Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya has stated that Thailand is satisfied with the International Court of Justice’s order regarding the indication of provisional measures submitted by Cambodia.

Speaking from The Hague concerning the Court’s order on July 18, he pointed out that the Court had not agreed to Cambodia’s request that Thailand unilaterally withdraw its forces from its territory according to the 1:200,000 scale map. Instead, the Court ordered that both countries immediately withdraw their military personnel present in the provisional demilitarized zone.

Importantly, he said, Cambodia must withdraw its troops from the Temple of Phra Viharn which has long been Thailand’s position. The Foreign Minister stated that the Court’s order on provisional measures and the provisional demilitarized zone would not prejudice the Court’s judgment to be made concerning Cambodia’s request for the interpretation of the 1962 Judgment regarding the case of the Temple of Phra Viharn and would not affect Thailand’s territory sovereignty and integrity.

In addition, the Court ordered that Thailand shall not obstruct Cambodia’s access to the Temple of Phra Viharn or the provision of supplies to its non-military personnel in the Temple. In this regard, the Foreign Minister said that both countries would have to further discuss details on this matter under existing bilateral mechanisms such as the Joint Boundary Commission (JBC), the General Border Committee (GBC), and the Regional Border Committee (RBC). This is consistent with what Thailand has always informed the international community.

The Court also ordered that both countries continue the cooperation that they have entered into within ASEAN and, in particular, allow the Indonesian observers to have access to the provisional demilitarized zone. In this regard, the Foreign Minister noted that on 6-7 July 2011, officials from the Indonesian Embassy in Thailand had already visited the Thai-Cambodian border and is in the process of submitting its report to the Indonesian Government.

The Foreign Minister stated that the package solution agreed to between the foreign ministers of Thailand, Cambodia and Indonesia on 9 May 2011 in Jakarta, Indonesia was now superseded by the Court’s order and the establishment of the provisional demilitarized zone. The Court’s order would now be the basis for future endeavors, which is consistent with Prime Minister Hun Sen’s earlier announcement that Cambodia would use the Court’s decision as the basis for resolving problems regarding the boundary and the Temple of Phra Viharn.

The Foreign Minister, responding to media enquiries about what steps would be taken, said that the Court’s order would be reported to the Prime Minister and the Cabinet. The Senate Foreign Affairs Committee would also be informed. Further details on the implementation of the Court’s order would be further discussed between the relevant security agencies concerned, such as the Ministry of Defense, National Security Council and National Intelligence Agency.
Furthermore, the Foreign Minister said that Thailand and Cambodia would need to discuss further details under the framework of the GBC as Thailand has always proposed. The Foreign Minister has also instructed the Foreign Ministry’s Deputy Permanent Secretary to hold preliminary discussions on the Court’s order with the Indonesian Foreign Minister during the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Bali, Indonesia.

The Foreign Minister also responded to questions on the issue of the sketch-map used by the Court to indicate the provisional demilitarized zone that the co-ordinates delimiting the zone would have to be plotted on the map of the area so as to ensure the proper implementation of the Court’s order.

Thailand respects the decision of the Court, which is part of the United Nations. As a member of the United Nations, Thailand would honor its obligations under the United Nations’ Charter. Towards this end, Thailand would discuss further details with both Cambodia and Indonesia.

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