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Vietnamese soldiers at border ordered to move camps from ‘white zone’

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Kandal provincial authorities on Sunday ordered Vietnamese soldiers to remove nine camps situated in a ‘white zone’ close to the Vietnamese border in Koh Thom district’s Sampov Poun commune. POLICE

Vietnamese soldiers at border ordered to move camps from ‘white zone’

Kandal provincial police chief Chhoeun Sochet on Sunday ordered Vietnamese soldiers to remove nine camps situated close to the Vietnamese border in Koh Thom district’s Sampov Poun commune.

The disputed area is a “white zone” which has yet to receive official boundaries or border markers.

A report from the National Police confirmed that Sochet led the commander of Border Unit 605 Kim Sreang, a provincial deputy police chief, the district police chief and Dambok Chev checkpoint forces to inspect the Dambok Chev borderline, which stretches for 4,700m from the Bak Day border gate to the Chamkar Chek area.

The inspection was meant to ensure the “white zone” was not being violated by Vietnamese planting crops on Cambodian soil.

The report said Vietnamese soldiers had erected makeshift camps along the borderline and people had been seen travelling to and from the encampment.

Sochet told the Vietnamese soldiers to remove the camps and place them far from the “white zone”.

The report added that the Dambok Chev checkpoint has two station posts to maintain security and to prevent offences along the borderline.

After the inspection, Sochet encouraged Sreang to patrol the area regularly.

Sochet could not be reached for comment on Monday.

Koh Thom district police chief Sim Kheang said on Monday that he had accompanied Sochet and over 20 specialists to inspect the area along the borderline.

“The police chief ordered the Vietnamese soldiers to remove nine camps,” he confirmed.

An official of the Vietnamese Embassy in Phnom Penh did not respond to The Post’s requests for comment on Monday.

Sreang could not be reached for comment.

But in a nearly 10-minute video posted on his Facebook page on Monday, Sreang said he had protested Vietnamese soldiers on several occasions and required them to erect camps away from the “white zone”.

“I’ve protested since the first time they came to erect their camps, but they didn’t listen to me. They stayed in the camps for nearly 10 days.

“I told them to remove the camps from the area and to erect them 300 to 400m from the area because we have not yet agreed to plant precise markers,” he said in the video.

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