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Further Thai troop incursions in Veal Antri

A GROUP of 30 Thai soldiers withdrew Thursday from Veal Antri near Preah Vihear temple just four hours after crossing the disputed border, an officer with the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces (RCAF) told the Post.

That followed an incident on Wednesday when military officials said about 100 Thai soldiers crossed into Cambodian territory before heading back to Thailand.

"Our soldiers urged them to go back, and they finally left at midday," Khim Eung, an officer in RCAF's Brigade 8, said, referring to Thursday's incident.

"They asked us if they could set up a base at the White Zone where they had set up tents on Wednesday, but our soldiers refused permission," he said.

 "We told them their tents would be removed, either by us or they could take them away themselves. They took them back to their base," he added.

The White Zone is an RCAF term for the disputed parts of the border between the neighbouring countries.

‘Always' trying to set up base

An RCAF officer stationed at Preah Vihear temple, who said he was not authorised to talk to the press about the border issue, told the Post by phone on Thursday that the Thai military "always tries  to set up bases here and there along the border - they continually do this".

Yim Phim, the commander of Brigade 8, confirmed Thursday that all of the Thai soldiers had left and the situation was back to normal in the area surrounding Preah Vihear temple.

He said the Thai soldiers had only briefly entered the White Zone.

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