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Thailand to continue good ties with Cambodia despite border dispute

English.news.cn   2013-04-20 19:00:51            

BANGKOK, April 20 (Xinhua) -- Thai Foreign Minister hailed its testimony at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) successful and said Thailand will maintain good ties with Cambodia after five days of oral statements between Thailand and Cambodia on disputed border area.

The two countries have been on the dispute over 4.6-square- kilometre plot of land where aged-old hindu Pear Vihear Temple located at their border.

The hearings on the border dispute ended Friday with both sides presenting their arguments. The ruling will not be delivered until October this year.

The ICJ had accepted Cambodia's request to reinterpret its 1962 ruling, which awarded ownership of the temple to Cambodia but did not mention the disputed area immediately surrounding it.

Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul said via video- conference from the Hague, the Netherlands, on "Yingluck Government meets the People," weekly TV program on Saturday that he was satisfied with Thai legal team's performance as Thai legal team did good job at the court.

Surapong also reiterated the point made by Yingluck when she met with Cambodia Prime Minister Hun Sen earlier in which she told her counterpart that regardless of the ICJ's ruling, Thailand would continue its good relations with Cambodia and join hands with Cambodia in developing the area around the temple.

"We will not let the outcome of the case worsen our good relations with Cambodia," Thai foreign minister said.

Yingluck late Friday night phoned to the team at the Hague to thank for their tireless effort in the court, he said, adding that the premier also satisfied and acclaimed the team performance.

Meanwhile, poll revealed on Saturday that almost half of the people worry that the Thai-Cambodian border dispute could lead to a war.

The pollsters at Assumption University, also known as "Abac poll" based the conclusion on interviews with 2,232 people between April 15 and 19.

According to the survey, about 48 percent of the respondents said they were very concerned that the dispute would trigger war between Thailand and Cambodia.

25 percent of the respondents said they were moderately concerned while about 27 percent expressed little concern or none at all.

Asked about ties between Thailand and Cambodia, about 52 percent of the respondents said they were not worried that the border dispute would erode the two countries' relationship, but about 48 percent said they had concerns.

Suriyan Boonthae, assistant director of Abac Poll, said the results showed that the Thai people polled wanted the government to maintain good relations with Cambodia, even though the border dispute is a serious issue for them.

They did not want to see the dispute worsen and affect border trade, the investment climate between the two countries and the migration of Cambodian workers into Thailand, he added.

The respondents wanted both the Thai and Cambodian governments to come up with a constructive way to resolve the border area dispute for mutual benefit, said the academic.

Editor: Luan
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