Saturday, 19 July 2008

Thai Supreme Commander to hold talks with Cambodian officials on Preah Vihear Temple

BANGKOK, July 18 (Xinhua) -- Thailand's Supreme Commander of Royal Thai Armed Forces Boonsrang Niumpraditt will lead Thai delegation to hold talks with Cambodian officials on resolving the military stand off at Preah Vihear Temple, according to a Thai military officer on Friday.

The talks are scheduled to be held in Thailand's northeastern province of Sa Kaew on July 21.

Lt Gen Niphat Thonglek, director of the Directorate of Military Border Affairs, said that Prime Minister and Defense Minister Samak Sundaravej decided on Friday to assign Supreme commander Gen Boonsrang, who is also deputy chairman of the General Border Committee (GBC) to told the talks with Cambodian side on behalf of Samak.

Boonsrang will be accompanied by the permanent secretary for Interior Ministry, the director-general of the Treaties and Legal Affairs Department.

both Thailand and Cambodia historically laid claim to Preah Vihear Temple, which now sits on Cambodian soil following the action of the International Court of Justice which awarded the ancient temple to Cambodia in 1962. However, the exact demarcation of the border around the ruins remains in contention.

The security situation around the temple deteriorated after three Thais were briefly detained by Cambodian soldiers on Tuesday.

according to local reports, both Thailand and Cambodia have reinforced their troops at and near Preah Vihear Temple.

Editor: Yan Liang

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