Asia-Pacific

Ninth day of Thai-Cambodia border clashes despite truce

Thai soldier patrolling, 28 April 2011
Image caption The latest violence on the disputed Thai-Cambodian border erupted on 22 April

Troops from Cambodia and Thailand have exchanged fire across their disputed border for a ninth consecutive day.

Officials from both sides said Saturday's fighting took place near the Ta Krabey temple - one of three claimed by both countries. No casualties have been reported.

Sixteen people have been killed in the latest clashes, part of a long-running dispute between the two countries.

On Friday a truce was broken by renewed fighting hours after it was agreed.

Tens of thousands of people have been displaced by the violence. Each sides accuses the other of starting it.

"Even though there is a recent ceasefire agreement... Thailand still breached it," Cambodia's Foreign Minister Hor Namhong told reporters in Phnom Penh on Saturday.

On Friday, Thai army spokesman Col Sansern Kaewkamnerd blamed Cambodia, adding that "local units might not agree to the talks as easily as their commanders did".

The latest series of border clashes began on 22 April, mainly around the temples of Ta Krabey and Ta Moan.

It briefly spread to a third location - the hill-top temple of Preah Vihear - on Tuesday.

Parts of the Thai-Cambodian border have never been formally demarcated, spurring nationalist sentiment in both countries.

Fighting took place three years ago in the run-up to a general election in Cambodia, and this latest outbreak comes with the Thai government due to call an election in the coming weeks.

A long-term solution at governmental level remains elusive, although the two prime ministers may talk at a meeting of the Asean regional bloc next month.

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