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 Blasting put on hold as threat to river border

The Nation,  Published on Apr 7, 2003

A Cabinet screening committee has resolved to postpone the proposed blasting of the Mekong River to prevent a possible demarcation dispute with Laos, a source said yesterday.

The panel, chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Chavalit Yongchai-yudh, will submit its decision for Cabinet approval tomorrow.

The Transport Ministry's proposed blasting of the Kon Pi Luang rapids in Chiang Rai to expand the waterway is part of an agreement with China, Laos and Burma. The Defence Ministry opposed the plan, saying the blasting would probably affect the natural border between Thailand and Laos and complicate current demarcation efforts. The screening panel agreed that blasting should await agreement on demarcation, the source said.

- The Nation


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