Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Thai, Cambodian generals meet at border to ease renewed tensions

Thai, Cambodian generals meet at border to ease renewed tensions

Thai, Cambodian generals meet at border to ease renewed tensions

090522_05.jpg
090522_05.jpg

Officials on both sides say dialogue helped build greater ‘understanding'.

Photo by:

TRACEY SHELTON

An RCAF soldier holds a rocket-propelled grenade near Preah Vihear temple earlier this month. 

A THAI military commander on Thursday met Cambodian commanders at the conflict zone near Preah Vihear temple, with the aim of promoting cooperation and reducing tension between the two sides, a military official told the Post Thursday. 

General Srey Doek, commander of Military Division 3 based at Preah Vihear, said that he met with General Anupong Paochinda, commander-in-chief of the Thai army, and discussed how to avoid future military confrontations.

"This is the first time I have met with a top Thai commander," Srey Doek told the Post. "We proposed that Thai troops stop entering the prohibited zone and he accepted."

Srey Doek said the two had agreed that troops on both sides should remain at their bases and wait for a solution between the two governments.  

Cambodian and Thai defence ministers met last month but failed to reach an agreement on troop redeployments from the areas surrounding the temple and the pagoda of Keo Sekha Kirisvara.

"The visit will speed up understanding between the two sides," said Commander Yim Phim of the RCAF'S Brigade 8. "This is the only point of the meeting."

Standoff in 10th month

Troops have remained at the border for almost 10 months, following Unesco's listing of the Preah Vihear temple as a  World Heritage site in July last year. The last exchange of gun fire, in April, killed three Thai soldiers. 

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