Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Preah Vihear temple model draws government’s ire




Preah Vihear temple model draws government’s ire

A 1/10th scale model of Preah Vihear temple near the Thai-Cambodian border. The 23rd Ranger Regiment, Thailand,  Photo supplied
A 1/10th scale model of Preah Vihear temple near the Thai-Cambodian border. The 23rd Ranger Regiment, Thailand, Photo supplied

Preah Vihear temple model draws government’s ire

The construction by the Thai military of a miniature replica of the Preah Vihear temple complex has been met with consternation by the government.

The 1/10th scale reproduction of the temple was constructed by the Thai army’s 23rd Ranger Regiment and Suranari Task Force on a 600-square-metre plot facing the original from the Thai side of the border.

Former 23rd Ranger Regiment chief Colonel Thanasak Mitraphanont yesterday told the Bangkok Post that the mini Preah Vihear was intended to show the Cambodian government that Thailand is ready to jointly develop the original, which has been the subject of a decades-long border dispute that escalated into military skirmishes between 2008 and 2011.

However, Cambodian government spokesman Phay Siphan was unimpressed yesterday, likening the tiny temple to a private firm’s controversial plan to construct an Angkor Wat replica in India’s Bihar state, which Cambodia successfully petitioned the Indian government to thwart.

“The purpose of this business is against the principles of civilised nations,” Siphan said, adding that any joint development will have to wait until outstanding border issues have been resolved. “We need to see demarcation and border posts placed before any activity related to joint development can take place.”

He also shot down long-standing Thai hopes of an entrance direct from Thailand to the temple complex. “We explained to them a number of times already, that a gate directly from the Thai side . . . is not feasible,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Thousands attend CNRP-organised pro-democracy vigil in South Korea

    Thousands of supporters of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) on Saturday gathered in the South Korean city of Gwangju to hold a candlelight demonstration calling for the “liberation” of democracy in Cambodia. Yim Sinorn, a CNRP member in South Korea, said on

  • US Embassy: Chinese trade does not help like the West’s

    The US Embassy in Phnom Penh on Friday said relations between China and Cambodia did not create jobs or help industry when compared to the trade between the Kingdom and the US. “About 87 per cent of trade [with China] are Chinese imports, which do not

  • Vietnamese land-grabbers held

    Following a provincial court order, Ratanakkiri Military Police on April 16 arrested 12 Vietnamese nationals accused of crossing the border into Cambodia and illegally clearing forest land. The accused are now being detained at Phnom Svay prison in the province. Ratanakkiri military police commander Thav Yen told

  • Eight people sent to court over violent protest

    Preah Sihanouk provincial authorities on Sunday sent eight people to court for blocking National Road 4 and using violence against authorities in a land dispute in Prey Nop district’s Bit Traing commune. Four police officers and two commune security guards sustained injuries when the protesters