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Commander moved, Preah Vihear temple replica to be demolished

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Commander moved, temple replica to be demolished

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BANGKOK: -- The commander of the Sixth Infantry Regiment whose area of responsibility covers the Mor E-Daeng cliff where the Preah Vihear temple replica is built has been transferred to Army staff position at the Second Army Region.

The order was signed by Army commander-in-chief Gen Teerachai Narkvanich, according to Matichon Online.

No reason was given in the transfer of Col Tanasak Mitrapanond from active position as field force commander in areas close to Cambodia’s ancient Hindhu-style Preah Vihear temple to the Army staff function, but he was responsible for cooperation with the private sector in the area to build the temple replica despite of opposition by the Foreign Affairs Ministry for fear of souring relation with Cambodia.

Construction of the temple replica built at the cost of five million baht finished just a few weeks ago and open to public for visits briefly before it was ordered shut down by the Army chief.

The temple replica was said to promote tourism to Mor E-Daeng cliff after the original Preah Vihear temple is not yet open to visitors by Cambodia.

The cliff is about 700 metres from the Hindhu temple in Cambodia.

Matichon said Gen Teerachai also ordered the demolition of the temple replica as it might affect the current good relations of the two countries.

He also said the Foreign Ministry had earlier voiced disagreement to the construction of the temple replica.

The temple replica was jointly built by soldiers from the Suranaree Field Force based in Korat. Construction took five months to complete.

There are both support and opposition to the temple replica in the local area.

Source: http://englishnews.thaipbs.or.th/content/162643

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-- Thai PBS 2016-05-10

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What a dreadful waste! Has Cambodia actually raised any concerns about the replica?

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five million baht for a small pile of stone?

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Army commander orders close watch over model Preah Vihear Temple

BANGKOK, 10 May 2016 (NNT) – The commander of the Royal Thai Army has ordered close watch over rumors that a model of the Preah Vihear Temple has been torn down.


The Royal Thai Army Commander has tasked Army Region 2 Commander Lt. Gen. Wichai Chajorhor with making sure rumors that a model of the Preah Vihear Temple has not been torn down. Lt. Gen Wichai has since confirmed that the model is still intact and that no conferences with Cambodia are needed at this time. While acknowledging there are negative sentiments surrounding the model, the Region 2 Army chief assured it is well protected for the sake of ties between Thailand and Cambodia.

On an order to move the 6th Infantry Commander Col Thanasak Mitraphanont to the Army Chief of Staff office, Lt. Gen. Wichai said it was unlikely the transfer was related to the model temple.

Asked about Cambodia’s reaction to the construction, the regional army head said the neighboring nation has yet to give a definitive response.

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-- NNT 2016-05-10 footer_n.gif

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Pardon me! But, since when does Khun Hun Sen run Thailand? Good Lord! What a lovely piece of work done by someone and to be destroyed by others..

Absolutely the most absurd thing I have seen the authorities do in Thailand. Kowtowing to Cambodia...

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Has Cambodia actually raised any concerns about the replica?

Yes.

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Pardon me! But, since when does Khun Hun Sen run Thailand? Good Lord! What a lovely piece of work done by someone and to be destroyed by others..

Absolutely the most absurd thing I have seen the authorities do in Thailand. Kowtowing to Cambodia...

Don't exaggerate, 'the most absurd thing', erm...

But, still, I wonder: in the same 'logic' (or lack of...), will the scale model of the (also 'Cambodian'...) Angkhor Wat temple complex shown to the visitors at Krung Thep's Grand Palace then also need to be demolished...

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The question is where did he get the money from to build the replica. At his level the B3 m will be +- 4 years gross salary. Seems as its not only the top dogs that have undeclared income.

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five million baht for a small pile of stone?

Most of the money went into the pocket of the Commander a the actual cost of the model was not one quarter of the 5 million.

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FYI, the road which Cambodia build on the Cambodian side bringing "things up" to the hill top of Preah Viharn, has not been entirely completed.

During a recent visit officials from the Cambodian army said if they attempt to complete the road the Thai army would shell them with artillery, never mind the good relation.

So the Thai side never had a chance to enjoy the ugly replica.

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The question is where did he get the money from to build the replica. At his level the B3 m will be +- 4 years gross salary. Seems as its not only the top dogs that have undeclared income.

He was a Junta big-wig, with positions on the NRC, and then the NRSA, so he was (at a minimum) double-dipping, excluding the five family members on his staff at the NRSA.

It seems like people at the MoFA were aware of this project, and had been warning that it was not appropriate, but this chap pressed forward.

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The temple replica was said to promote tourism

Why business does the military have to do this project? Tourism doesn't fit the defense and security of the nation profile.

Unless High Command (NCPO/Minisyer of Defense?) requested the replica to be built in order to promote tourism.

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