Thailand: Too early for cease-fire

Feb. 18, 2011 at 12:13 PM
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BANGKOK, Feb. 18 (UPI) -- Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva says it is too soon to sign a cease-fire agreement with Cambodia, which he said started a "fight."

The countries have been shooting at each other near a disputed border near the Preah Vihear temple, the Bangkok Post reported.

"We were not the ones who started the fight. It is still too soon to talk about signing any agreement," Abhisit said. "Thailand said from the beginning that we were not the first to open fire. We did what other countries would -- that is, when we are fired at or attacked first, we fire back. We have the right to protect our sovereignty."

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen proposed the cease-fire. He said signing could be witnessed by members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations at a meeting next week.

The U.N. Security Council has called for a permanent cease-fire between Thailand and Cambodia.

The International Court of Justice awarded Cambodia the temple, which can only reached by crossing into Thai territory, in 1962 but the countries continue to fight over boundary issues, the report said.

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