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Troops To Stay Put During Thai Strife

Prime Minister Hun Sen on Monday appealed to Cambodian soldiers to limit operations while Thailand undergoes a new round of political instability.

Thai protesters have gathered in the tens of thousands in Bangkok to demand fresh elections, raising the possibility of further demonstrations and strikes.

“For the problem in Thailand, it’s the Thai people’s problem,” Hun Sen said, speaking at a graduation ceremony at the International Institute of Education.

“I also appeal for all Cambodian troops who are stationed along the border with Cambodia and Thailand, please have good cooperation with the Thai army and provincial governors of Thailand close to the border with Cambodia. If it’s not important, please do not mobilize the troops.”

Hun Sen said he wanted to avoid “misunderstandings from the Thai side,” adding, “I won’t allow Cambodian troops to cause any problem between Cambodia and Thailand.”

Chea Dara, the army commander in charge of front-line operations near Preah Vihear temple, said his troops remained stationed at the border and were prepared “to protect our territory.” However, he said, they would not be moving, as per Hun Sen’s order.