Thailand may release crew of N.Korea arms plane

Thailand was not opposed to deporting the five-man crew as requested by their home countries.

Thailand may release crew of N.Korea arms plane

The crew of a plane carrying 35 tonnes of missile parts and other weapons from North Korea may be released rather than face charges in Thailand where they were arrested, a senior Thai official said on Wednesday.

Thailand was not opposed to deporting the five-man crew as requested by their home countries, Kazakhstan and Belarus, Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban told Reuters, adding that the Thai attorney general's office would make a final decision.

The plane and the weapons were impounded and its crew were arrested at Bangkok's second-biggest airport on Dec. 11.

"The government is of the opinion that for the security of Thailand and good relations with (these) countries, we do not object to this," Suthep said in an interview.

"We are looking at Thailand's best interest. We do not want to have too many problems with anyone," he said.

He said Thailand was awaiting guidance from the United Nations on what to do with the weapons.

The crew members have repeatedly denied knowledge of the weapons or where they were headed. Their home countries sent a request to the Thai Foreign Ministry to send the men home.

The crewmen said the plane, which made an emergency landing in Bangkok, was en route to Sri Lanka and the Middle East. Thailand has repeatedly postponed a decision to indict the men.


Reuters

Last Mod: 03 Şubat 2010, 14:25
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