"Striking where it hurts" | Bangkok Post: learning

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"Striking where it hurts"

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The Thai Patriots Network is threatening to close a border checkpoint in Sa Kaeo to press for the release of seven Thais in a Cambodian jail. 

Veera Somkwamkid is escorted by Cambodian police at Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday.

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'Patriots' threaten checkpoint

Closing border crossing 'would hurt Cambodia

A splinter group of the yellow shirt People's Alliance for Democracy is threatening to close a border checkpoint in Sa Kaeo to press for the release of seven Thais in a Cambodian jail.

The group's target is the permanent Aranyaprathet-Poipet checkpoint in Aranyaprathet district through which goods worth almost 30 billion baht pass each year.

Chaiwat Sinsuwong, a core member of the Thai Patriots Network, yesterday said the group needs to strike where it hurts Cambodia the most.

He said the closure would prevent Thai gamblers from crossing the border to visit casinos in Poipet and stem illicit activities along the border including contraband, drugs and illegal labour.

The town of Poipet houses a number of casinos, a prime source of income for Cambodia, and many Thais visit it.

"When the checkpoint is closed, Cambodia will release the seven Thais. It wouldn't trade its source of income [for the detainees]," he said.

Mr Chaiwat said the group will press for the release of the seven Thais even though two of them, Veera Somkwamkid of the network and his secretary Ratree Pipatanapaiboon, face additional charges of espionage.

Mr Chaiwat said Cambodia was trying the seven Thai nationals illegally and their detention was considered as kidnapping under the Geneva Convention.

He said the convention, which had been endorsed by both countries, forbids the arrest and trial of civilians in a disputed area.

The seven were arrested on Dec29 when they entered a disputed area near Nong Jan village in Sa Kaeo's Aranyaprathet district next to Cambodia's Banteay Meanchey province.

The network will today rally in front of Government House to force the government to take action, he said.

The group is critical of the Democrat-led administration's handling of the matter and believes it has done very little to help the detained Thais.

Mr Chaiwat said the group will today submit a petition to the United Nations and International Red Cross Society asking both agencies to monitor the case.

Mr Veera, meanwhile, has refused to give a statement to the Cambodian municipal court unless he can do so through an interpreter provided by the Thai embassy in Phnom Penh, said Chavanond Intarakomalyasut, secretary to Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya.

Mr Veera and Ms Ratree were taken to the court yesterday for a hearing on the espionage charges against them.

Mr Chavanond said Mr Veera demanded an interpreter from the Thai embassy instead of a court interpreter which is normally provided.

He said the Thai embassy in Phnom Penh is prepared to submit the request but the decision rests with the Cambodian court.

Mr Chavanond said Thai authorities are working on bail requests and a response is expected in a few days.

He denied the government had urged the seven Thais to plead guilty to the trespassing charges and seek a royal pardon afterwards.

Asked about a prisoner exchange programme, Mr Chavanond said it was too early to consider it.

escort – to go with someone คุ้ม
municipal – of a town, city or district with its own local government เทศบาล
patriot – someone who has strong feelings of love, respect and duty towards their country คนที่รักชาติ
threaten – to say that you might do something bad or harmful, especially in order to make someone do something  ขู่เข็ญ คุกคาม ทำให้กลัว
border – the official line separating two areas, regions or countries  เขตแดน อาณาเขต
splinter group – a group that has broken away from a larger parent group กลุ่มที่แตกออกจากกลุ่มใหญ่
People’s Alliance for Democracy – the union of several groups protesting against the past government and which staged large protests against the Thaksin government as well พันธมิตรประชาชนเพื่อประชาธิปไตย  
release – allowing someone to go free การปล่อยตัว
target –a person, business, building, area, etc., that someone intends to attack เป้าหมาย
permanent – happening or existing for a long time or for all time in the future ถาวร  
goods – things that are produced to be sold สินค้า
core – of members of a group who do the most important work, or who support it most strongly แก่น แกนนำ
Thai Patriots Network – The group formed to pressure the Thai government into not approving any agreements which would result in the loss of territory to Cambodia เครือข่ายกลุ่มคนไทยหัวใจรักชาติ
strike – to attack โจมตี
gambler – someone who takes risks, especially by betting more, that will bring important benefits if it is successful ผู้เสี่ยงโชค, ผู้เสี่ยงทาย
casino – a building where gambling games, especially roulette and card games are played for money บ่อนการพนัน
stem – to stop something from increasing or spreading หยุดยั้ง,ยับยั้ง,สกัด
illicit – against the law ผิดกฎหมาย
illegal – against the law  ผิดกฎหมาย
contraband – goods that are brought into or taken out of a country illegally  สินค้าเถื่อน, ของเถื่อน, สินค้าที่ถูกลักลอบเข้ามาอย่างผิดกฎหมาย
labour – work, especially hard physical work งานที่ใช้พละกำลัง
prime – main or most important ที่สำคัญที่สุด
source of income – a way of earning money ทางได้, วิธีที่จะได้มาซึ่งผลประโยชน์
trade – to exchange something that you have for something else แลกเปลี่ยน
detainee – someone who is kept in prison  ผู้ที่ถูกกักขัง คุมขัง
charge – an official statement accusing someone of committing a crime ข้อหา
espionage – the activity of secretly getting important political or military information about another country or of finding out another company's secrets by using spies  จารกรรม
detention – forced officially to stay in a place การกักตัว
kidnapping – taking someone away and make them a prisoner, especially in order to get money, freedom for someone else, etc. การลักพาตัว
convention – an official agreement between countries or leaders สนธิสัญญ, ข้อตกลง
endorsed – officially approved รับรอง
forbid – to state that something is not allowed, according to a rule, law, or custom ห้าม
arrest – (of the police) taking someone to a police station because they are believed to have committed a crime การจับกุม
trial – the process of examining a case in a court of law and deciding whether someone has or has not committed a crime  การพิจารณาคดี
civilian – of someone who does not belong to the armed forces or the police พลเรือน
disputed area – an area claimed by two or more countries, groups or people  พื้นที่ที่เป็นกรณีพิพาท
rally – to join a public meeting that a lot of people go to in order to support someone or protest against someone or something ชุมนุม
critical – saying that someone or something is bad or wrong ที่ชอบจับผิด
administration – government รัฐบาล
matter – a situation or subject which is being dealt with or considered เรื่อง, ภารกิจ, งาน
submit – to formally give something to someone so that can make a decision about it ยื่น (เอกสาร) เพื่อการพิจารณา
petition – an official document in which you ask an authority to do something คำร้อง
monitor – to regularly check something or watch someone in order to find out what is happening  ตรวจสอบ ตรวจตรา
meanwhile – at the same time ในเวลาเดียวกัน
statement – a formal written account of events that a person who has seen a crime or who has been accused of a crime gives to the police คำให้การ    
interpreter – someone who changes what someone else is saying into another language ล่าม
embassy – a group of officials who represent their government in a foreign country สถานทูต
authorities – people who have the power to make decisions or enforce the law เจ้าหน้าที่ผู้มีอำนาจ
bail – money that is given to a court when someone is allowed to stay out of prison until their trial. If they do not return for the trial, the court keeps the money  เงินประกัน; การประกันตัว
deny – to say that you did not do something that someone has accused you of doing ปฏิเสธ
urge – to advise someone very strongly about what action or attitude they should take ผลักดัน, กระตุ้น
plead guilty – to formally tell a court of law that you did commit the crime you are accused of  รับสารภาพ  ให้การว่าได้กระทำผิดตามที่ถูกกล่าวหา
trespassing – going onto someone's land or enter their building without permission การบุกรุก,การรุกล้ำ
pardon – an official decision to forgive someone for  committing a crime and to free them from punishment  การอภัยโทษ การนิรโทษกรรม

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