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Thailand Mulls Returning Ambassador


Deputy Prime Minister Trairong Suwankiri, speaks to VOA, while on a visit to Washington for a nuclear summit.

Deputy Prime Minister Trairong Suwankiri, speaks to VOA, while on a visit to Washington for a nuclear summit.

Thailand is considering returning its ambassador to Cambodia, following a slight thaw in relations between the two countries, a senior Thai minister said Monday.

Thailand is considering returning its ambassador to Cambodia, following a slight thaw in relations between the two countries, a senior Thai minister said Monday.

Prime Minister Hun Sen said assured Thailand last week that Cambodia would not be used by ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra as a political base to attack the current government, which is weathering a prolonged protest in Bangkok.

Such assurances had made the government “very happy,” said Deputy Prime Minister Trairong Suwankiri, on a visit to Washington for a nuclear summit. “So now we are considering sending our ambassador back.”

Trairong told VOA Khmer in Washington Monday that Thailand wanted to normalize its relations with Cambodia, but he would not give a date when an ambassador would return.

Both sides withdrew their respective ambassadors in November 2009, following the appointment of Thaksin as economic adviser to Hun Sen. Cambodia and Thailand remain at odds over the border near Preah Vihear temple and a sea boundary agreement.

A Cambodian Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman said Thailand had not yet sent an official letter concerning reinstating an ambassador. Cambodia will send its own ambassador back “15 minutes” after the Thais return theirs, the spokesman said.

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