Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Thailand, Cambodia meet to negotiate a cease-fire

Phnom Penh Cambodia .- The Government today announced a meeting with Thailand to negotiate a ceasefire in fighting between their armies in the border for five days, resulting in 13 dead and tens of thousands displaced. The Cambodian Defense Ministry said in a statement that the Thai Defense Minister, Gen.

Pravit Wongsuwan, had agreed to travel to Phnom Penh to discuss the truce. The bilateral meeting is at the initiative of Thailand and offered himself Wongsuwan during a telephone conversation this afternoon with his Cambodian counterpart, Tea Banh, according to the official note. The statement did not indicate when the talks will be held in Thailand.

The Thai authorities have made no statement about it to confirm or deny the report in Cambodia. However, Thai government spokesman Jaisamutr Supachai reported that the head of Foreign Affairs, Kasit Piromya Yakarata will meet tomorrow with his Indonesian counterpart, Marty Natalegawa, to discuss the dispute.

Indonesia, as current President of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), took office in February to reconcile the mission to Cambodia and Thailand. The UN, ASEAN and the United States have called on both countries to reduce tensions in the region and resolve the conflict peacefully since it began last Friday, the latest round of fighting.

The armies of Cambodia and Thailand back today to exchange fire rifles, machine guns and mortars on the common border, in another temple in the area whose property is a source of discord. This dispute gained momentum in 2008 when the Hindu temple of Preah Vihear, where they reached the clashes today, was declared a world heritage site and was entered into Cambodian territory.

Thailand claims sovereignty of this particular religious center that the International Tribunal in The Hague awarded to Cambodia in 1962, but an area of 4.6 square kilometers adjacent. Since the decision of UNESCO, the armies of both countries have faced several times, most recently in February and killed eight people, including civilians, and dozens wounded in the fighting for four days.

The following month, Cambodia and Thailand agreed to mediation in Indonesia, but then the Thais moved from opinion and argued that the Indonesian observers in the disputed area could complicate the situation.

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