Cambodian, Lao PMs agree to expedite negotiations over border row

Source: Xinhua| 2017-09-01 17:24:24|Editor: Yamei
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PHNOM PENH, Sept. 1 (Xinhua) -- Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen and his Lao counterpart Thongloun Sisoulith agreed on Friday to speed up their negotiations over border dispute.

The agreement was reached after their meeting at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh.

Speaking at a joint press conference after the meeting, Hun Sen said that he and Thongloun allowed foreign ministers of the two countries to meet in coming days to discuss details of resolution to the border issue.

He added that both sides also agreed to send their respective experts in the Cambodia-Laos Joint Border Committee to work together at disputed border areas and to immediately demarcate any areas where the two sides agree.

"The outcome we have achieved today, I can say proudly that friendship between Cambodia and Laos will be further enhanced through settling the remaining issues peacefully," Hun Sen said.

For his part, Thongloun said that he agreed with the points Hun Sen had mentioned.

"The settlement of border issue between our two countries is based on the principles of friendship and equality. There is no loser and winner," he said.

Thongloun added that both sides also agreed to maintain security and peace along the non-demarcated border areas.

Border dispute between Cambodia and Laos began in April when Cambodia accused Laos of sending about 30 soldiers to occupy the areas of O Alay and O Ta Ngav in Stung Treng province bordering Laos' Attapu province; however, all Lao soldiers pulled back from the areas on Aug. 12 in the afternoon, hours after an urgent meeting between Hun Sen and Thongloun in Vientiane.

Cambodia shares about 540 km of border with Laos to the north and northeast. To date, the two neighbors have achieved 86 percent of the border demarcation.