Thai troops pull out of the defended zone west of Chak Chreng pass

Thai soldiers trespassing into the disputed zone near Preah Vihear (Photo: Reuters)
19 April 2010
By Leang Delux
Radio France Internationale
Translated from Khmer by Socheata
Click here to read the article in Khmer

A group of 12 Thai soldiers who sneaked into the area west of Chak Chreng pass on 16 April, have pulled out in the afternoon of 18 April, following negotiations between frontline commanders. Chhum Socheat, spokesman for the ministry of National Defense, claimed that the border situation at O’Smach pass where an armed clash took place is returning back to normal.

A group of 12 Thai soldiers who came in to set up camp west of the Chak Chreng pass, have pulled back to their camp on 18 April. This group of Thai soldiers sneaked in by foot to this defended zone in the afternoon of 16 April.

General Chhum Socheat, spokesman of the ministry of National Defense, told RFI on Monday that these Thai soldiers pulled out at 2:30PM on 18 April, following negotiations from frontline commanders at noon time. Chhum Socheat explained that the area where the Thai troops entered and whom Cambodia chased them out, is a region where both sides agree not to maintain the presence of any troops due to its complexity. On the other hand, Thai troops sneaked into this area to set camp, therefore Cambodia must chased them out.

In the past, Thai troops always made attempt to move in to set camp in new areas along the border, sometime they even built permanent campsite. However, frontline Cambodian troops always negotiated to have them pulled out.

According to the claim made Chhum Socheat, up to now, the border situation is returning back to normal, this also includes the O’Smach pass where an armed clash took place in the morning of Saturday 17 April.

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