Saturday, 19 July 2008

Tension along Thai-Cambodian border continues, agencies

Cambodian and Thailand Saturday increased their troops in the fifth day of a tense standoff on disputed land near Preah Vihear temple.

There are more than 500 Thai troops and over 1,000 Cambodian soldiers stationing in the area, according to AFP.

The mood among Cambodians reportedly became tense on Friday evening when Cambodian ambassador to Thailand Ung Sean was summoned to the Foreign Ministry to hear the Thai government's protest over Cambodia's claim of ownership of the disputed zone near the temple.

According to the ministry spokesman Tharit Charungvat, the ministry handed the ambassador a letter from Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej to his Cambodian counterpart HunSen, which insisted Thai soldiers were deployed on Thai soil.

Mr Samak's letter said the area the Cambodian leader claimed was part of Cambodia was actually within Thailand.

Brigadier Chea Keo, commander of Cambodian forces in the area, replied on Saturday: "On the map, it is our territory."

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