Mon, Jul 05, 2010
The Nation/Asia News Network
Cambodia's handover of 2 Thai bomb suspects a thaw in relations?

CAMBODIA has detained two Thais wanted by Thailand for allegedly plotting last month's botched bomb attack on the Bhum Jai Thai Party's headquarters and plans to turn them over to the Thai embassy today.

"Although there is no request from the Thai government, the Cambodian government has decided to arrest and send the two terrorists back to Thailand," the Cambodian foreign ministry was quoted by Agence France Presse as saying in a statement issued Saturday evening.

Cambodia adheres to an "antiterrorism policy", according to the statement, which confirmed an earlier media report that the man and woman were believed to be sheltered by Phnom Penh.

The first report of the capture of Warisriya Bunsom, 42, and Korbchai Bunplod, 41, came Saturday afternoon from the Cambodian consulgeneral's office in Sa Kaew's Aranyaprathet border town. Both were located and apprehended in Cambodia's Siem Reap.

Warisriya and Korbchai are among four people accused of providing logistics support for alleged bomber Anek Singkhunthod, who was wounded when the explosive hidden in a motorcycle with a sidecar modified into a fruit stall went off prematurely.

Two other suspects implicated by Anek, Kamphol Khamkhong and Dejphol Phutthajong, were arrested in the following few days.

Police have said the bomb was assembled at Warisriya's Bangkok home on Soi Choke Chai 4 with the assistance of three men including Korbchai.

Another bomb also allegedly made by the four suspects was discarded off RamIntra Road in northern Bangkok for fear of arrest after the first bomb attack on the party's compound failed.

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said all details about the arrests and the handover of both suspects would be made public today.

Security at border checkpoints remains high as military and police are on alert to catch redshirted leaders and protestors who may try to flee the country.

AFP, which reported both suspects' ages at 33, also noted that Cambodia's decision to take them into custody could be seen as an attempt at thawing diplomatic ties with its neighbour, with which it has a history of rocky relations.

Tensions have also enveloped a troop standoff at the disputed border between the countries after clashes erupted near the ancient Preah Vihear Temple in July 2008, AFP added.

-The Nation/Asia News Network

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