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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - KR bid at talks snubbed

KR bid at talks snubbed

FOURTH military region commander Khan Savoeun has refused to negotiate loosening

the army cordon around Anlong Veng and has moved to the front line near the rebel

stronghold.

Khmer Rouge deputy general chief of staff Duol Sareoun and Ta Pheap contacted RCAF

on Mar 28 and said that they wanted to talk with Savoeun on the radio but he refused,

4th military region deputy commander Long Serea Roth said.

"He [Khan Savoeun] ... said he just wanted to talk with Ta Mok or Pol Pot only."

The KR officers reportedly wanted RCAF to withdraw and continue negotiations.

Savouen moved to O Phdau, 20km from the rebel stronghold, on Apr 1 to personally

command troops.

Some 60 KR families have left Anlong Veng to locations in Anlong Kranh and Chup Svay

fearing government attack, according to a front line commander, Seng Pich Monyl.

KR breakaway group official Long Narin claims that the hostages are alive and that

Ta Mok has requested a 50-day extension to release them, according to an ICOM radio

interception. "Ta Mok... will not accept talks," he says. "When the

wet season comes, he will probably request a three-month extension. That's how they

operate."

Meanwhile, Thai military sources have been sending mixed signals on the fate of 15

government negotiators held in Anlong Veng since Feb 14. Thai second military region

officers at a Cambodian-Thai meeting in northwestern Thailand on Mar 17 claimed that

12 or 13 had been killed but that Ta Mok denied any responsibility.

A Thai military delegation in Siem Reap Mar 30 gave a different account of the situation,

saying that the hostages were alive."Thai delegates told us that the our brothers

were not killed," Serea Roth said.

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