BANGKOK, Jan 18 -- Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva today pledged that his government would go to any length to help return the seven Thais detained in Cambodia back home and said he believed that the legal case would be concluded soon.
The Cambodian Court of Appeals on Tuesday granted the bail petition for four remaining Thai detainees, except for Veera Somkwamkid, coordinator of the Thai Patriots Network, who is still being held in Prey Sar Prison.
Mr Abhisit said he was informed about the latest Cambodian court's order and that he personally talked with 2nd Lt Samdin Lertbutr, one of the four Thais released on bail.
The premier said Lt Samdin told him that the Thai embassy in Phnom Penh has taken very good care of them and that the Thai Foreign Ministry would send more physicians to give medical care to the released Thais.
"We only have had a general discussion," Mr Abhisit said. "I have not asked him to contact the Thai Patriots Network now rallying in front of Government House to get it to understand the government's stance."
Mr Abhisit said he believed the case could be concluded soon. After the Cambodian court gives its verdict, the government will then evaluate the situation before deciding its next move.
The premier said he has no idea or details on why Mr Veera's petition was rejected, but the Cambodian court must have reasons to support its decision.
Mr Abhisit said he could not comment on a possible petition for a royal pardon, but his government has prepared every possible option to secure their release. Once the court hands down its verdict, he would clarify it to the public.
The Cambodian court last Friday rejected earlier bail requests for the five Thais then still detained in a Cambodian jail, after allowing bail for Democrat MP Panich Vikitsreth and Naruemol Chitwaratana of the People’s Network Against Corruption and Santi Asoke networks on Thursday.
The seven were arrested Dec 29 by the Cambodian authorities for illegal entry into Banteay Meanchey province.
The Thai detainees faced two initial charges -- illegal entry into the Cambodian kingdom, with possible punishment of three to six months jail and deportation, and also trespass on a Cambodian military zone, punishable by three to six months jail and Bt7,500-15,000 in fines, while the spying charges could result in five to 10 year imprisonment. (MCOT online news)