By Stingray, this blog national security journalist
Reuters just reported 3 more global oil giants just got Cambodia’s nod to explore oil and gas at Thai-Cambodia disputed Gulf of Thailand area (see this blog on-record section). At the same time, land dispute between the two countries sees both countries sending reinforcements to the area .
The list of oil and gas firms getting the Cambodia nod, now includes French Total, US Chevron and Japan Mitsui among others.
A group of Thai right wing nationalistic agitators, Yellow Shirt, have sent Thais to Phra Viharn relics area to “Evict” Cambodians who have settled n the disputed area, and is suing several government for letting the Cambodians settle in the disputed area.
Thai e-news, the oficial news outlet of the anti-government Reds, reported that because the Thai attorney general office has recommended not to press charge against the Yellow Shirt in the occupation of the government house, and the police dragging its feet on the occupation of the Thai airport case, the Yellow Shirt feels “Invincible” to do anything.
“Thai officials were told by the Yellow Shirt that they will camp at the Phara Viharn temple because they pay tax and have the right to stay anywhere,” said Thai e-news.
Taksin supported political party, Puey Thai, also said they were going to censure the Democrat Party led government of Abhisit on allowing the Cambodians to settle in the area. When Abhisit was the opposition, it attacked the Puey Thai for “Loosing ” the disputed area to Cambodia, to which the current Thai foreign minister, Kasit, then called the Cambodia prime minister a “Cheap Hoodlum.”
Earlier, Cambodia said to Thai senior army officials they were ready to throw 10,000 battle hardened troops against the Thai force.
The Yellow Shirt action have seen both Thai and Cambodia sending troops and police into the area to maintain peace. Both government have said they will seek to negotiate a way out of the disputed territories, however, nationalism fervor is high in both countries over the dispute and both countries have a long history of conflict and rivalry.
As earlier as last week, Cambodia sent military men to challenge the Thai force at another disputed track.
Thai oil giant PTT that is in the Fortune list of the global largest 500, have the right to explore the disputed track, from the Thai government. PTT’s right now overlaps the right of other oil and gas firms that have gotten Cambodia’s OK. The World Bank estimates the disputed track to be a major mother-load.
This blog earlier reported that the French navy is in preparation to operate in the ASEAN waters and that a Frenchman now heads an important NATO post, signaling close French US ties. This blog reported that it appears the strategic choices for Thailand is limited.
It also appears that te situation has worsen.