Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Suthep: Govt won’t lose face

Published: 18/11/2009

(Posted by CAAI News Media)

It will be good if former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra can use his personal friendship with Cambodian premier Hun Sen to get the release of Siwarak Chutiphong, Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban said on Wednesday.

"The government has been trying every means to get [Mr Siwarak] free and would not lose face if Cambodian government releases him because of Thaksin’s influence,” said Mr Suthep.

Citing a Cambodian radio station, a local Thai daily reported that Cambodia had agreed to release the alleged Thai spy and had asked Puea Thai Party chairman Chavalit Yongchaiyudh to fly to Cambodia to bring the man back.

However, Lt-Gen Chawengsak Thongsaluay, a close aide of the party chairman, said Gen Chavalit had not yet made a decision to fly to Cambodia as he needed time to verify the report.

Thaksin on Tuesday said on his internet channel,, that he had asked the Cambodian government to ensure the Thai engineer receives a fair trial.

Chavanont Intharakomalsut, secretary-general to the minister of foreign affairs, said Cambodia has pressed a charge of spying, accusing the Cambodia Air Traffic Services engineer of obtaining secret official information and threatening its security. Mr Siwarak was earlier alleged to have passed intermation about the flight schedules of Thaksikn and Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen to an official at the Thai embassy.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has denied the charge, insisting that the engineer has nothing to do with spying and that his action has not posed a threat to Cambodia’s security,” Mr Chavanont said.

Mr Suthep said the charge against Mr Siwarak was unjust because Thaksin's flight plans were not a state secret.

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