PUBLISHED : 10 Feb 2024 at 06:10
Thailand and Cambodia will soon open the Ban Nong Ian-Stung Bot border gate to boost logistics and trade between the two countries.
Sa Kaeo provincial governor Parinya Potisat on Fridaysaid the new border crossing will accommodate further trade expansion while also alleviating congestion around the Ban Khlong Luek-Poipet border.
Thailand and Cambodia have also agreed to construct a new border crossing in Aranyaprathet district of Sa Kaeo linking to Stung Bot village in Cambodia’s Banteay Meanchey province.
The purpose of this development is to facilitate cross-border goods transportation.
However, there are ongoing challenges with landmines in four Thai districts, which have been the focus of joint mine clearance operations between the two countries since 2000.
Landmines are commonly found along borders in seven provinces from Ubon Ratchathani to Sa Kaeo.
Mr Parinya has consulted the chief of defence forces, Gen Songwit Noonpackdee, on such challenging issues related to areas to be opened as border crossings.
Aside from the landmines, areas along the border in Sa Kaeo are subject to overlapping territorial claims.
Recently, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Manet met Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin in Thailand and discussed the economic development of border areas and overlapping maritime and land territorial claims.
Currently, land ownership documents cannot be issued to some landowners in Sa Kaeo as neither side has reached an agreement to settle territorial claims.
A joint commission between Thailand and Cambodia has been set up to seek a conclusion and outline a map to set a clear boundary marker.
According to a government source, the issue of the Preah Vihear temple ruins territorial claim was not brought up during the discussions between Mr Srettha and the Cambodian premier, as Cambodia was concerned that activists in Thailand might rally at the ruins.
Access to the ruins from the Kantharalak district of Si Sa Ket has been blocked since 2008, when military activities increased on both sides of the border.
Military clashes with a reported 34 fatalities followed in 2011. Two years later, the International Court of Justice ruled that the land adjacent to the temple on the east and west belongs to Cambodia. A 1962 ruling that ended a decades-long dispute said the temple’s south side was Cambodian territory and the north side was Thai.