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Cambodian top diplomat visits troops at Preah Vihear temple to explain World Court's ruling

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Cambodian top diplomat visits troops at Preah Vihear temple to explain World Court's ruling

PREAH VIHEAR, Cambodia, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Hor Namhong on Saturday visited troops stationed at Preah Vihear temple territory to explain the interpretation of the recent World Court's ruling over disputed land with Thailand.

Addressing more than 1,000 soldiers at a military headquarters about 20 km west of Preah Vihear temple, Hor Namhong explained the International Court of Justice (ICJ)'s verdict in the case regarding the hotly-contested land around the 11th century Preah Vihear temple to the troops and said the country was satisfied with the court's decision.

Upon Cambodia's complaint, the Hague-based ICJ ruled on Nov. 11 that Cambodia has sovereignty over the whole territory of the promontory of Preah Vihear temple, and ordered that Thailand was under an obligation to withdraw from that territory the Thai military or police forces, or other guards, or keepers that were stationed there.

He said the court has delimited in the area of the temple and its vicinity by the line on the Annex I map.

"In the next step, our first negotiation (with Thailand) will be about the withdrawal of Thai troops from the area that the court ordered Thailand to pull out its troops from," he told the troops. "And the second negotiation will be about the Trap Mountain (disputed) area."

"Our two negotiations with Thailand will be based on the Annex I map, which is used by the ICJ," he said.

There is no any specific timeframe for talks with Thailand on the issues.

Government Spokesman and Information Minister Khieu Kanharith said Tuesday that Cambodia would not rush to start talks with Thailand over the implementation of the ICJ's ruling so as to give time to the Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra's government to resolve its internally political turmoil.

Cambodia and Thailand has had a bitter border dispute since July 2008 when the UNESCO added the Cambodia's Preah Vihear temple to its prestigious World Heritage List, but Thailand claimed the ownership of 4.6 square km of scrub next to the temple.

The temple had become a flashpoint of armed clashes between the two countries' troops since then; however, military tensions have calmed since July 2011 when Yingluck, sister of ex-Thai Premier Thaksin Shinawatra, took office.

Thaksin is a close friend of Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/xinhua-news-agency/131207/cambodian-top-diplomat-visits-troops-at-preah-vihear-temple-