Thailand: S'pore may lose army training site

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Senior Member
Apr 1, 2005
Singapura, Singapore
S'pore may lose army training site

[SIZE=-1]Surin warns dispute could get out of hand[/SIZE]


Army chief Sonthi Boonyaratkalin is considering reviewing and possibly cancelling a contract for Singapore to use a military training base in Kanchanaburi if the city-state fails to cooperate on the issue of ousted prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, a highly-placed source said. Singapore would be seriously concerned about a termination of the contract, as it is a small island country without space for military training, the source added. The island republic has been paying to use the military camp in Kanchanaburi province for at least 20 years.

The source added Singapore's army has signed an agreement to use the camp for a joint military exercise, known as ''Crescendo'', with its Thai counterparts in Kanchanaburi. The ongoing exercise, which is organised every three years, will end in July.

The disclosure came amid a souring of relations following Singapore's recent reception of Mr Thaksin.

Gen Sonthi, who led the coup that ousted Mr Thaksin, yesterday blasted the ousted premier's family for selling their telecommunications business to Singapore, saying it could pose a threat to national security.

''The army is also in trouble. Our communications and information sent over mobile phones or via satellite could appear in Singapore,'' he said.

''Although Singapore is not our enemy, we are economic rivals. They could be informed of secrets in the army and in the economic sector.''

Gen Sonthi, who is also chairman of the Council for National Security, said the army would adopt certain measures to deal with Singapore. But he promised they would be subtle, and not include a boycott of bilateral military cooperation.

The two countries have maintained cordial military relations, and the army has been trying to keep politics out of military affairs, he added.

CNS spokesman Col Sansern Kaewkamnerd said CNS members had expressed concern over the issue at their meeting yesterday .

A source said ACM Chalit Phukphasuk, CNS deputy chief, would use the current joint military exercise to express Thailand's concern.

Singapore is paying up to a billion baht a year for the use of the army camp in Sai Yok district. The contract is renewed every 10 years.

The Thaksin government also allowed Singapore to lease part of Wing 23 air base in Udon Thani for military flight training.

Former foreign minister Surin Pitsuwan, currently a legislator, cautioned that diplomatic friction could get out of hand.

He raised concerns over possible complications from excessive patriotism, which could be generated by the Singapore issue.

Surachart Bamrungsuk, a security expert at Chulalongkorn University, was critical of the suspension of a civil service exchange programme and retraction of the invitation to Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo.

The response showed the government ''was overly concerned'' with Mr Thaksin's movements.

Thailand had never before resorted to such retaliation, which showed that Asean members were unable to settle disputes through dialogue, Mr Surachart added.
Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont said the Foreign Ministry's response had been carefully considered.

Government spokesman Yongyuth Mayalarb emphasised that other cooperation programmes with Singapore would continue.

Democrat party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva said the so-called ''personal matter'' brought up during talks between Singapore Deputy Prime Minister S. Jayakumar and Mr Thaksin concerned business which would have adverse repercussions for Thailand. He called on the Surayud government to explain its response to Singapore in terms of facts and principles.


New Member
Jan 23, 2002
Visit site
Maybe they have more pride most of us and seethings beyond $$$. Remember how do our dear leaders react whenever somebody says bad about them....


Senior Member
Sep 10, 2005
Raffles Place
see ! and yet still got many singaporeans still want to go bangkok for tour..

how can a country be ruled by army men who has no business management experience ?

i hope thailand will not strike off another asia finanical crisis again.. just like in 1997.

Aug 16, 2005
I just hope Thailand dont become like Myanmar, first a military take over then a "council" in this case a council for security. Next the council starts making weird decisions and accuse everyone of being enemies of the state. Next thing we know, they impose new laws to keep the military in power for the good of the nation and we have another military dictorship.


Senior Member
Feb 15, 2005
Very shallow cabinet. Oh well. Hainan Island anyone? :bsmilie:


Senior Member
Feb 24, 2005
The spat with Sing will fade and things will improve.
The junta may or may not go away.
I do not think it will last.

This spat will blow over. The so-called spat is just a deliberate distraction.

What is the real danger to the Thais?

Losing the South forever in the long term to the separatists.

This general's first loyalty is to his A****.
Never forget that.
Don't over look that.

(Remember the film Chariots of Fire?)
Did some Scottish Olympic runner ever say?: "God before King"

If I were a Thai I will watch out.
Sing is not the enemy.
The enemy is......


Senior Member
Nov 14, 2002
As a country with little resources, it just shows how reliant we are on other countries. :eek:


New Member
Oct 20, 2004
thailand is ----ing irritating man.
george yeo very busy le.. lol

George Yeo have little to worry about.
In fact, Ho ching have to answer the billions lost.

Look at the positive side, at least reservists can forget going overseas trip.
Train at local soil, go back home by night fall.

What a wonderful news.

:p :think: :p


New Member
Oct 20, 2004
As a country with little resources, it just shows how reliant we are on other countries. :eek:

As a country with little resources, why should we have a military force?

:think: :p :think:


Senior Member
Jul 24, 2002
Planet Eropagnis
Maybe they have more pride most of us and seethings beyond $$$. Remember how do our dear leaders react whenever somebody says bad about them....
That's not the point of the entire spat.

Learn to look beyond the obvious.

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