Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Cambodian Information Minister: No tension at border with Thailand

PHNOM PENH, July 15 (Xinhua)

There is no tension currently at the border between Cambodia and Thailand, although both sides stationed more troops there over a territorial dispute around the Preah Vihear Temple, said Information Minister and government spokesman Khieu Kanharith here Tuesday.

Three Thai protesters were arrested earlier in the day for jumping an immigration checkpoint to reach the temple. Thai troops then came to fetch them and the number of soldiers gradually built up to around 100.

Kanharith confirmed the increase of Thai troops and said that negotiation is going on to quiet the situation.

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen has ordered troops to withhold firing unless being fired upon first, he said. Cambodia needs to find out more and let Thailand know how they got the border wrong, he said. "If they had intended to invade, we would have used our weapons," he said.

Meanwhile, a Thai army ranger was released for treatment after he stepped on a landmine and made his leg ripped off, he added. Provincial authority of Preah Vihear earlier told reporters that the Thai troops entered the Cambodian territory.

However, the Thai side said that a delegation was sent into Cambodia to secure the release of the three protesters, insisting the soldiers had remained nearby but on Thai territory.
The protesters trespassed the border with intention to reclaim the 11-century classic Khmer-style temple, which the International Court of Justice awarded, together with the land it occupies, to Cambodia in 1962, a decision that rankled the Thais.

The temple straddles the Thai-Cambodian border atop the Dangrek Mountain and was listed as a World Heritage Site on July 7 by UNESCO's World Heritage Committee. Thai Foreign Minister Noppadon Pattama resigned last Thursday after the Constitutional Court ruled that he had overstepped his authority in supporting Cambodia's application to have the temple classified as a World Heritage Site.


Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?