A Change of Guard

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Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Cambodian Newspaper Claims Thailand is Planning Protest at Preah Vihear Temple

7 July 2010
Source: TAN Network

A Cambodian newspaper has claimed that Thailand is recruiting about 5,000 people to conduct a protest at Preah Vihear Temple on the 2nd-year anniversary of the temple's application to be one of UNESCO's World Heritage sites.

It has been reported by Kampuchea Thmey, a Cambodian newspaper, that Thailand is recruiting about 5,000 people to conduct a protest at Preah Vihear Temple.

According to the newspaper, the source of the report was a commanding officer within the Thai armed forces.

As a result, the Cambodian military has stepped up security along the border.

It should be noted that the story was circulated the day before the 2nd-year anniversary of the Cambodian government's attempt to register the disputed temple as one of UNESCO's World Heritage sites.

General Jia Dara, a Cambodian commander responsible for security at the Preah Vihear Temple area, said in an interview that he has issued a warning to the Thai government that Cambodia will not allow any type of provocation, and its armed forces have been ordered to protect its sovereignty at all costs.

At the same time, Brigadier General Yim Pim, a Cambodian army commander, has boasted that the armed forces are fully capable of repelling any invasion.

Cambodia is planning a celebration of the 2nd-anniversary of the temple's UNESCO World Heritage registration on July 15th.

Kolbotkhmer Note: After Prasat Preah Vihear Khmer was listed as the World Heritage Site on 7 July 2008, the extreme Thai group called themselves as Dhamayatra or PAD led the demonstration to Prasat Preah Vihear on Tuesday, 15 July 2008, vowing to reclaim the temple which the World Court handed over to Cambodia in a 1962 ruling. Three of the protesters, one man, one woman and a Buddhist monk managed to slip through Thailand's military fence and illegally entered into Cambodian territory near Prasat Preah Vihear. The Cambodia troops arrested them and then Thailand sent hundreds of Thai troops to Prasat Preah Vihear areas insisting that they came to station there in order to protect the three arrested Thai nationals and to fetch them to Thailand. Hours after the three Thai protesters were released by Cambodian troops after heated negotiation between the two countries´delegates. It was a success for Thailand and as a response to this kind of soft reaction of Cambodia, blinded by pride; ignorance and greed Thailand didn´t only withdraw its troops from Prasat Preah Vihear Khmer areas but it keeps sending more troops which lead to the full scale invasion on Prasat Preah Vihear Khmer on 17 July 2008 and it goes on until today.

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