Cambodian prime minister Hun Sen called on Laos on Friday to withdraw troops he said have been present in Cambodia since April, threatening military action against the neighboring country if its soldiers are not pulled out by Aug. 17, Cambodian media and other sources said.
Speaking at a ceremony in the capital Phnom Penh, Hun Sen said that he has ordered a temporary halt to road construction in northeastern Cambodia’s Stung Treng province challenged by Laos to give its soldiers a chance to leave.
Residents of Stung Treng should not be alarmed, though, if they see Cambodian troops mass in the area to take back the disputed land, Hun Sen said.
“I can’t let anyone take an inch of Cambodian land, and Cambodia won’t take anyone else’s land either,” the prime minister said.
“I urge Laos to withdraw its troops from Cambodia unconditionally,” he said.
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Reported by Sonorng Kher for RFA’s Khmer Service and by RFA’s Lao Service. Translated by Sarada Taing and Bounchanh Mouangkham. Written in English by Richard Finney.
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