Thailand would like more than 60,000 Cambodian refugees now in its territory to
return home so they could vote in the July 26 Cambodian elections, Thai embassy officials
said on Feb 19.
The return of the refugees was one of the issues discussed by Thai Foreign Minister
Surin Pitsuwan in talks in Manila last weekend with Philippine Foreign Secretary
Domingo Siazon and Indonesian Foreign Minister Ali Alatas.
"Thailand would like around 64,000 Cambodian refugees to go back home to join
the election," a Thai diplomat said.
Thai Embassy officials said they did not know any specific timetable for the return
of the refugees to Cambodia.
The foreign ministers of Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines said in a statement
on Feb 15 after their Manila meeting that "efforts must be made to allow"
the refugees to go back home and take part in the Cambodian polls. The three ministers
comprise the so-called "troika" which ASEAN set up to find a solution to
the Cambodian conflict. - Reuters