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Cambodian temples seek world status

CAMBODIA is to ask the United Nations to register four temples - one dating back some 1,400 years - as World Heritage Sites, a government official said yesterday.

Listings by UNESCO, the world body's cultural agency, normally get international assistance to preserve the sites, and inevitably attract a larger number of tourists.

Kum Polin, a senior official at the Ministry of Culture, said the highest priority will be given to the 7th-century Sambor Prei Kuk temple, located at what was once the country's capital some 128 kilometers north of Phnom Penh.

A master plan for development and conservation of the temple is now being drawn up and the submission to UNESCO is expected within three years, he said.

The country will also nominate the Bantey Chhmar temple, built in the 12th and 13th centuries; the 13th-century Nokor Bachey temple; and the temple at Oudong, the capital in the 17th and 18th centuries.


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