Thailand steps back in confrontation with Cambodia over 900-year-old temple

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But the area around a 900-year-old temple, where both countries claim 1.8 square miles of territory, remains tense and the two sides continued to offer conflicting accounts of the situation on the ground.

On Monday, Hun Sen, the Cambodian prime minister, gave a 24 hour ultimatum for 80 Thai troops allegedly inside Cambodia to withdraw. On Tuesday morning, the Cambodian commander, General Yim Pim, claimed the soldiers had moved back inside Thailand.

"The tense situation has now eased," he said.

But Thailand, which had earlier insisted that its troops were in its own territory, denied any withdrawal.

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