Cambodian premier refuses to discuss border plan with Thai deputy PM

 Phnom Penh, June 26, 2009

hun_sen_17_2_08Phnom Penh – Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen said Thursday he would refuse to discuss a Thai plan for the neighboring countries to jointly administer an 11th-century Hindu ruined temple in a disputed border region during the Thai deputy prime minister’s visit Saturday.

“It is not necessary for us to discuss this plan because this is a Thai suggestion and has nothing to do with Cambodia,” he said in his speech at a university graduation ceremony in Phnom Penh. “But if he wishes to discuss Thailand withdrawing its troops from our soil, then we will talk about that.”

Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said last week he would ask UNESCO, which administers the Preah Vihear temple under Cambodian supervision, to launch a review of the administration of the World Heritage-listed site.

He said shared supervision of the site would ensure “the two countries can jointly benefit from this site of high historical importance.”

Thailand planned to submit the proposal at a UNESCO committee meeting in Spain this week, provoking condemnation from Hun Sen and Cambodian Foreign Minister Hor Namhong.

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