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Cambodian commanders not concerned with Thai military threats

Cambodian troops took up positions near border post No. 46 on 5th January after Thai yellow shirts attempted to crossing the border in the area.
After the arrests of the 7 Thais, Thai PM Abhisit Vejjajiva had
warned that putting the 7 Thais on trial will complicate the matter and
that Thailand will re-assess its relationship with Cambodia if the 7
Thais are not released soon. At the same time, thousands of Thai troops
and weaponry had reportedly been reinforced to the border areas.

However, Cambodian front line commanders said they are not scared or concerned of the Thai threats and troops reinforcements.

Gen. Chea Dara, Deputy Commander-in-Chief of Royal Cambodian
Armed Forces and Commander of the Preah Vihear Operations, told RFA
that Cambodia has enough weapons and troops stationed along the borders
and they are ready to defendCambodian territorial integrity and will
not allow the situation to be like in 2008 when Thai troops invaded the
Preah Vihear surrounding areas. “We Khmers have Samdech Decho Hun Sen and Madame (Bun Rany Hun Sen) whom the troops respect and take orders from in order to defend Samdech Decho, defend Cambodian territory. This hour will not be like in 2008. This is 2011, I am telling you”, he said.

Also in response to the Thai warning, Gen. Srey Doek, Cambodian commander of intervention force in Preah Vihear, said Cambodian troops will fight to the death in the event that Thai troops invaded Cambodian territory.
“We don’t pay attention to these sorts of language and we are not
worried because our country is another (independent) country and they
(Thailand) are anotherseparate country. And we are not a colony of
Thailand, no! We will follow the orders from Samdech Decho our prime
minister, we will take measures to defend our territory, even one
milimetre we won’t allow it to be lost to Thailand. I will fight back
when Thailand invaded me. I will resolutely defend my territory. They
can’t invade us, we will fight to the death”,
he said.

On 5th January, both Cambodia and Thailand had reinforced their troops
to an area near border post No. 46 near Cambodia’s Chok Chey village
where the 7 Thais were arrested to prevent Thai yellow shirted
protesters from crossing into Cambodia.

At the same time, the
Thai Nation newspaper has quoted Thai Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya as
saying that he will re-examine relations with Cambodia if the case of the 7 Thais did not progress.

Mr. Koy Kuong, spokesman for the Cambodian Foreign Ministry, said the case of the Thai 7 nationals must be subjected to Cambodian judicial process. He said the case of the 7 Thais is a separate
legal process not relating to bilateral relations between the two
countries. He said that Thai FM Kasit Piromya had told reporters on
30th December, after his unsuccessful effort to secure the release of
the 7 Thais, that the issue would not affect the relations between the
two countries.

Prime Minister Hun Sen also said publicly that
the issue would not affect the bilateral relations between the two
countries and added that he will not interfere with the judicial
process. “We have arrested the 7
Thais who are from the Yellow Shirt movement, 2 members of parliament
plus a number of journalists. They (Thai side) asked me to intervene to
secure the release of the 2 members of parliament. I told them that the
cases of the 2 MPs (and the others) are in the one lawsuit. If we
released 2 people and keep the others it is wrong. The Thai MPs, they
have parliamentary immunity only in Thailand, but when they enteredCambodian territory, I am sorry”,
he said.

Despite Cambodia’s claims, Thai commanders said to the contrary that there are no reinforcements of troops despite an ongoing tensions along the borders between the two countries over the recent arrests of the 7 Thai nationals.

By Khmerization
Source: RFA
Categories: Local News
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