Thai, Cambodian armies clash

2011-04-22 16:25

Bangkok - Thailand and Cambodia exchanged artillery and gunfire for several hours on Friday in a flare-up of a long-running border dispute, and their militaries said six soldiers were killed.

The fighting near the ancient temples of Ta Krabey and Ta Moan forced thousands of civilians on both sides to flee. Cambodia says artillery fell on villages and other areas as far as 21km inside its territory.

It was the first skirmish reported since four days of fighting in February, when eight soldiers and civilians were killed near the 11th century Preah Vihear temple, about 160km to the east of Friday's fighting.

A decades-old border dispute over ancient temples and the land surrounding them has fueled nationalist passions in both countries.

Clashes have erupted several times since 2008, when Preah Vihear was given UN World Heritage status.

Each side blamed the other for the resumption of fighting.

Thai army spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Siriya Khuangsirikul said three Thai soldiers had been killed, and 13 wounded, one critically. Cambodian defence spokesperson Lietenant General Chhum Socheat said three Cambodian soldiers were killed and six wounded.

Indonesia, chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, called for an immediate cease-fire and further efforts to resolve the border dispute. Fighting stopped by early afternoon, but no cease-fire had been reached.

Deliberate act of aggression

Tensions between the neighbours have been exacerbated in recent months in part by pressure from influential Thai nationalist groups, which have protested in Bangkok urging the government to take back land awarded to Cambodia by an international court ruling.

The flare-up comes as the Thai military raises its profile in domestic politics ahead of a general election expected to be held by early July.

The army had previously effectively vetoed an agreed-on plan to station Indonesian observers to monitor the border situation.

Cambodia in a note from Foreign Minister Hor Namhong to the president of the UN Security Council accused Thailand of refusing to accept the Indonesian monitors so it could carry out "this deliberate act of aggression".

Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva told reporters his government was investigating the cause of Friday's clash and said despite a pause in fighting, the situation was volatile.

"What we would like reiterate is the position of troops of both countries are close to each other. Therefore, any movement can lead to clashes," Abhisit said.

Abhisit called for a meeting of one of the bilateral committees the two countries have set up to discuss border issues.

Reiterating Thailand's stance on its dispute with Cambodia, he said it was not necessary for Asean or other multinational bodies to take up the matter, because then "it will be harder to solve."

Cambodia insists bilateral talks are unproductive and a third party's participation would be useful.

- AP
Read more on:    cambodia  |  thailand
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Africa: Land of Billionaires!

Find out who are the richest of the richest in Africa!

 
 

Men24.com

Best bro movies 2014
Every man should be able to do these three things
Goalkeeper saves five penalties with his FACE!
Hottie of the day: Jesselyn

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

Contract Supervisor

Western Cape
Human Communications (Pty) Ltd
R6 500 - R7 500 Per Month

Export Area Manager

Western Cape
BRO Resourcing
R40 000 - R45 000 Per Month

Candidate Attorney

Cape Town CBD
Assheton-Smith Incorporated

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Hot festive offers at kalahari.com!

Hurry! Stocks are limited. Don’t miss out. Shop Now!

Save up to 60% on toys!

Don’t miss out on this hot offer, save up to 60% on toys. While stocks last. Shop now!

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Grandiose ideas and plans can trip you up today. Keep things in context and take one step at a time....read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.