Saturday, September 24, 2011

Surapong confirms changes of Thai chairman of JBC

Foreign Minister Surapong Towichukchaikul confirmed Friday that he has changed the Thai chairman of ThaiCambodian Joint Border Commission from Assada Chaiyanam to Bundit Sotethipalarit.

Surapong said the change of Thai JBC chairman was approved by the Cabinet on September 13 but has only just been disclosed.

He said the change was necessary so that negotiations on border disputes could progress.

Surapong said Bundit, who is a former ambassador to several countries, has good ties with Cambodia and should be able to negotiate with Cambodia on the disputes.

Surapong said he also changed the two advisers to the JBC from the Thai side from Weerachai Palasai and Chatree Atthajanan to Prasart Prasatwinijchai and Natthawut Phothisaro.

A change has also been made in the adviser to the technical committee in charge of dissolving border disputes with Cambodia, with Pornchai Danwiwat, deputy directorgeneral of the Asean Affairs Department replacing Kriangsak Kittichaiseri, the Thai ambassador to Canberra.

"Changes are normal and happened in all ministries following a change in government," Surapogn said.

"The team had to be changed because the old team failed to make any progress over the past two years. I hope the new team will be able to achieve a settlement in the disputes as soon as possible."

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