Officials Deny Thai Soldiers Crossed Border in Pursat

Pursat provincial officials de­nied Wednesday that Thai soldiers had crossed the border and entered the province’s Veal Veng district and ordered villagers to remove their homes.

A news report Tuesday stated that the military standoff between Thailand and Cambodia—which began in July at Preah Vihear temple—had spread along the border Tuesday as far southwest as Pursat.

Pen Navann, RCAF chief in Pursat province, said Wednesday that five Thai soldiers had Aug 8 threatened to evict Cambodian villagers living near the Thai border in the province’s Dangrek moun­tain area, but that there had been no similar incident since that time.

“I have not seen any Thai soldiers since that time,” he said by telephone.

Veal Veng Deputy District Gov­ernor Se Chhiv said he hadn’t heard anything about Thai soldiers infringing on the district.

Se Chhiv said he was aware there had previously been a Thai military presence along Pursat’s border.

Chhay Sareth, Pursat provincial governor, also said Wednes­day that he hadn’t heard anything about Thai soldiers entering Veal Veng or threatening villagers.

“I haven’t heard anything from the Veal Veng district governor,” Chhay Sareth said. “I’ll let you know if I hear anything tomorrow,” he said.

Other temple areas in Oddar Meanchey province remained quiet Wednesday.

Khong Samkhan, Oddar Mean­­chey’s chief commander of border police, said Wednesday that no more Thai troops had shown up at Ta Krabey temple.

“They entered Ta Krabey temple last Wednesday, and left Thursday,” he said, adding that Cam­bodian troops remained stationed 100 meters from the temple.

Nark Vong, RCAF region 4 deputy commander, said 300 troops remain near Ta Krabey.

 

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