>Thai Cambodian talks fruitless after all

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Thai soldiers survey the ground near the Thai-Cambodian border, in the disputed border area with Cambodia, near the Preah Vihear temple, in Si Sa Ket province, northeast of Bangkok, October 17, 2008. Thai and Cambodian army commanders ended five hours of talks on Thursday with no agreement to withdraw their forces after heavy fighting near a disputed 900-year-old temple killed two Cambodian soldiers.

REUTERS/Chaiwat Subprasom (THAILAND)

Published: Thursday 16 October 2008
Talks between Thai and Cambodian generals have proved fruitless after all. Earlier today, the media reported agreement had been reached on joint military patrols on the mutual border, but Thai general Wiboonsak Neeparn has denied the reports. He said the troops in the area would remain in their present positions.

Only yesterday, Cambodian and Thai soldiers were engaged in a gun battle in the area. An international court awarded the temple to Cambodia in 1962, but land surrounding it remains the subject of rival territorial claims.

China urged the two countries to arrive at a peaceful solution to the conflict. Beijing is Cambodia’s main financial backer. In the past two years, China has donated more than 800 million US dollars in aid to Cambodia.

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