February 01, 2011
Thailand has reaffirmed that a disputed temple on the common border with Cambodia is situated on Thai territory and demanded that Phnom Penh remove both the temple and its flag.
"Thailand maintains that the Keo Sikha Kiri Svara Pagoda is situated on Thai territory, and demands that Cambodia remove both the pagoda and the Cambodian flag flying over the pagoda," the Thai Foreign Ministry said in a statement received by media late Monday.
"This is a reiteration of the many protests that Thailand has submitted to Cambodia regarding the activities carried out in the pagoda and the surrounding area, all of which constitute violations of sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Kingdom of Thailand," the statement said.
Recently, Cambodia erected a controversial stone sign in front of the temple, but later removed it after a request by Bangkok.
The Thai Foreign Ministry reaffirmed the government's commitment to resolve all boundary issues with Cambodia in accordance with international law through peaceful means under the framework of the existing Thai-Cambodian Joint Commission on Demarcation for Land Boundary (JBC), the statement said.
The two countries' border issue recently heated up after seven Thais were arrested by Cambodian soldiers on Dec. 29 for illegal entry into the neighboring country. Five of them were on Jan. 21 sentenced by a Phnom Penh court to nine months of imprisonment but were able to return home as the jail term was suspended.
Hundreds of the "yellow-shirts" People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) have been rallying near the Government House in Bangkok to demand the Thai government to take a tougher stance against Phnom Penh on the border issue.