Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Thai-Cambodian Border Clashes Continue As Talks Stalled

via CAAI


(RTTNews) - Clashes between security forces along the Thai-Cambodia border continued on Wednesday, as Thailand's Defense Minister canceled his planned trip to Cambodia for ceasefire talks.

Thai Army spokesman Colonel Sansern Keowkamnerd told reporters that Thailand pulled out of the ceasefire talks with Cambodia in protest against comments in Cambodian media that the Thai government agreed to talks as it was losing the five-day-old border clash

Thai Defense Minister General Prawit Wongsuwan was scheduled to meet his Cambodian counterpart in Phnom Penh on Wednesday to discuss ways to put an end to border skirmishes.

Thai, Cambodian border forces have been engaged in renewed clashes since Friday over the ownership of a 4.6-square-kilometer territory around the Preah Vihear temple.

Eight Cambodian and five Thai soldiers have been killed and more than 60 others wounded in exchange of fire and artillery at the disputed sites around the 11th-century Hindu temple. It forced tens of thousands of residents at the border to flee their homes. The fighting continued on Wednesday afternoon, reports said.

Reports quoting a Thai Army spokesman said a civilian was killed overnight in Thailand's border province of Buriram.

Cambodia said Army troops on both sides of the border exchanged shots early on Wednesday at two sites along the disputed border.

Cambodia and Thailand share an 800-kilometer land border. Their claims over the cliff-top Preah Vihear temple, which is on the Cambodian side of a vague boundary, has been a cause for a long-standing feud between the South East Asian neighbors.

Both sides built up military forces along the border when the shrine was granted UNESCO World Heritage status in July 2008, making it a regular flashpoint between the two nations.

by RTT Staff Writer

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