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Thaksin fears legal loss

Former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra has made a pessimistic assessment of his country’s chances of winning an international legal battle over the Preah Vihear temple, while Cambodia has submitted its case in the dispute to the United Nations’ highest court.

Koy Kuong, spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said yesterday that Foreign Affairs Minister Hor Namhong travelled to The Hague on Thursday to deliver Cambodia’s case documents to the
International Court of Justice.

“We have prepared enough evidence in responding to Thailand,” Koy Kuong said.

In late November, Thailand submitted 900 pages of documents to ICJ defending its claim over 4.6-square kilometres of disputed territory surrounding the 11th-century temple.

Cambodia requested the ICJ reinterpret its favourable 1962 decision in April last year, following fierce clashes between the neighbouring countries around the temple area.

In an interview with the Bangkok Post yesterday, Thaksin, the ousted brother of Thai PM Yingluck Shinawatra, made a stark assessment of Thailand’s chances at the ICJ, warning that failure could stoke domestic political tensions

“Frankly speaking, Thailand is at a disadvantage in this case,” Thaksin said.

He urged the government to explain the facts to the public to avoid serious internal conflict, but said it was unlikely his sister’s government would ask Cambodia to withdraw its case from the ICJ.

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