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Soldiers held with arms cache

A RANYAPRATHET, Thailand-Thai troops have arrested six Cambodian soldiers believed to have been smuggling weapons through Thailand to sell to ethnic Burmese rebels, a Thai army spokesman said Aug 4.

Colonel Asawin Sawetserani said the regular army soldiers had arms including 441 round for 82 mm mortars, 36 AK-47 rifles, two SAM-7 surface-to-air-missiles along with two launchers, thousands of bullets and two M-26 hand-grenades.

He said the Cambodians, detained on Thailand's eastern border, were thought to be planning to sell the weapons to ethnic minority rebels on Thailand's northern border with Burma.

Asawin said the smuggling was discovered after a tip-off. The six are being held at a Thai army camp pending an investigation.

The Thai-Cambodian border, more than 700 km long, is regarded as a major route for weapons exchanges between Cambodians and Burmese rebels.

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