Thai Defence Chief receives top military award

President Tony Tan Keng Yam congratulating the Thai Chief of Defence Forces General Sommai Kaotira after conferring the Distinguished Service Order (Military) on him at the Istana on Aug 3, 2016.
President Tony Tan Keng Yam congratulating the Thai Chief of Defence Forces General Sommai Kaotira after conferring the Distinguished Service Order (Military) on him at the Istana on Aug 3, 2016. PHOTO: MINDEF
The Thai Chief of Defence Forces General Sommai Kaotira (left) calling on Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen at the Ministry of Defence on Aug 3, 2016.
The Thai Chief of Defence Forces General Sommai Kaotira (left) calling on Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen at the Ministry of Defence on Aug 3, 2016. PHOTO: MINDEF
General Sommai inspecting the Guard of Honour contingent at the Istana.
General Sommai inspecting the Guard of Honour contingent at the Istana. PHOTO: MINDEF

SINGAPORE -The Thai Chief of Defence Forces General Sommai Kaotira was conferred Singapore's highest military award, the Darjah Utama Bakti Cemerlang (Tentera), which means Distinguished Service Order (Military), by President Tony Tan Keng Yam at the Istana on Wednesday (Aug 3) afternoon.

He was conferred the award for his contributions in forging closer ties between the Royal Thai Armed Forces (RTARF) and Singapore Armed Forces (SAF).

Under his leadership, defence cooperation between both armed forces strengthened through a range of bilateral and multilateral activities such as Exercise Kocha Singa and Exercise Cope Tiger, the Ministry of Defence (Mindef) said in a statement.

Guests at the investiture included Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen, Chief of Defence Force Lieutenant-General (LG) Perry Lim, as well as senior government officials and military officers from Singapore and Thailand, Mindef added.

As part of his visit, General Sommai called on Dr Ng and LG Lim at the Ministry of Defence this morning. General Sommai's visit from Aug 2 to 3 underscores the close and long-standing defence relationship between Singapore and Thailand, it said.