FM lauds 'confidential diplomacy'
- Published: 15/01/2013 at 12:06 PM
- Online news:
Cambodia has confirmed it will release a high-level Thai prisoner on Feb 1, and Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul credited "confidential diplomacy" with Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen for the gesture.
The Cambodian foreign ministry announced last week that Ratree and Veera would have their prison sentences cut. (File photo)
Ratree Pipattanapaiboon, convicted in 2010 of espionage and illegal entry to Cambodia, will be released on Feb 1, some six years ahead of the end of her formal sentence.
Ratree was secretary to Veera Somkwamkid, head of the self-styled Thai Patriots' Network. Both were arrested when they crossed the Thai border into Banteay Meanchey province on Dec 29, 2010.
Cambodia was clear that their trial and eight-year prison sentences were because of their political views that Cambodia is encroaching on Thai territory.
Under the deal worked out in the "confidential diplomacy", Veera is serve a short amount of time after Ratree's release - and then will also be freed.
MCOT news online quoted Mr Surapong as saying he was in touch with Ratree's family to see if they wished to travel to Cambodia for the release.
Ratree will be taken to the Thai embassy on Feb 1, where diplomats will formally accept her release, said the minister.