The government has defended its renewed campaign against Cambodia's listing of the Preah Vihear temple, saying it could talk Phnom Penh into understanding Thailand's stance.
Thailand's decision to maintain its objection to the unilateral listing of the Khmer ruins as a World Heritage site has upset Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen, who said he deeply regretted Thailand's position.
Cambodian Defence Minister Tea Banh yesterday took the Thai government to task for raising the matter which he said was likely to mar bilateral attempts to resolve border disputes.
Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva yesterday said the government has "ways" to communicate with Cambodia to avert border tension and he believed that Hun Sen would understand.
"The cabinet has widely discussed the matter because we do not want any conflict. Still, we have to defend what we believe to be our legitimate rights," Mr Abhisit said.
"If he knows our intention, there is nothing for him to regret," he said of Hun Sen's comment.
Mr Abhisit said Thailand felt the need to renew the objection because the proceedings undertaken by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) to manage the site were deemed to threaten Thailand's approach to mitigate border disputes.
"We understand that the World Heritage Committee mission is to preserve heritage sites so people have a chance to appreciate them, and that involves peace. Its objectives will not be met if its proceedings will lead to conflicts," the prime minister said.
If you look at Abhisit's record so far, he has been a complete failure at every level.
He used Preah Vihear to bring down Samak, and now he is using Preah Vihear to distract from his multiple failures as prime minister.
Cynical politics at its worse.