BANGKOK, March 20 (UPI) — Senior Thai officials plan to meet with Chinese officials in the first high-level bilateral talks on the drought along the Mekong River, authorities say.
The Bangkok Post reported Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva plans to attend the proposed talks, which would be held on the sidelines of the Mekong River Commission meeting in Hua Hin, Thailand, from April 2-5, Kasemsun Chinnavaso, chief of the Thai Water Resources Department, said.
But China has yet to say whether its prime minister or a deputy will attend the meeting, he said. China, which is not a member of the MRC, is set to join the summit as a dialogue partner.
The water department chief said Bangkok would ask China about the operation of Chinese dams on the Mekong.
Downstream countries have been affected by changes in the river’s flow since China started operating three dams two years ago, Kasemsun said.
Local residents and activists say China’s dams are the major cause of the severe water shortages along the river, the Post reported.
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