Thailand, Cambodia Meet Over Migrants, Railroad

In a wide-ranging meeting on border issues in Bangkok last week, Interior Minister Sar Kheng and his Thai counterpart agreed to work together to curb illegal migration and human trafficking, and discussed progress on a railroad connecting their two countries, a police official said Sunday.

“Sar Kheng said in the meeting that authorities in the two countries are working together to take action against human trafficking and migrant workers who are illegally crossing the border,” National Police spokesman Kirth Chantharith said of the three-day meeting with Thai Interior Minister Anupong Paochinda, which ended Friday.

Lieutenant General Chantharith said the two ministers agreed to begin issuing “letters” to Cambodian migrant workers who cross into Thailand on a daily basis.

He did not elaborate on the purpose of the letters, but according to a statement released on Thursday, the Interior Ministry will soon begin issuing special travel documents to Cambodians who are legally employed abroad.

Lt. Gen. Chantharith said the ministers also talked about a railway that would eventually link Phnom Penh and Bangkok.

“The two sides agreed to finish a railway connecting Thailand to Cambodia as soon as possible,” he said.

“The Cambodian side is pushing to finish the last part of the railway, about 10 km between Battambang province and Banteay Meanchey province’s Poipet City.”

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