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Thailand, Cambodia pledge restraint in border dispute (2nd Roundup) ខែកក្កដា 23, 2008

Posted by សុភ័ក្ត្រ in News.
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Singapore – Cambodia and Thailand assured Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo on Tuesday that they would exercise ‘utmost restraint’ and try to resolve a tense border dispute amicably.

‘Both sides also reiterated that they would handle the situation in accordance with their ASEAN and international obligations,’ Yeo said in his capacity as chairman of the Association of South-East Asian Nations.

Foreign ministers of the 10-nation bloc had offered to mediate the growing tensions that has Thai and Cambodian soldiers massing on the common border over claims to an iconic 11th-century Hindu temple.

‘The proposal found favour with a number of foreign ministers, but there was also a general view that the bilateral process should be allowed to continue, and there is still no consensus for the formation of such a group,’ Yeo said.

Yeo said he requested Cambodia and Thailand ‘to provide an update’ at the net informal ASEAN Ministerial Meeting in New York.

They ‘gave the assurance that they would exercise utmost restraint and resolve the issue amicably in the spirit of ASEAN solidarity and good neighbourliness,’ he said.

ASEAN will not referee the dispute focusing on an ancient temple on the border unless both sides agree to its mediation, diplomats said earlier.

While Cambodia has sought ASEAN’s assistance in resolving the row, the foreign ministers ‘didn’t go any further’ than saying that the group was prepared to help, ASEAN Secretary General Surin Pitsuwan told reporters.

‘ASEAN stands ready to extend any support if the two sides would like ASEAN to play a role but we didn’t go further than that,’ he said.

‘It’s unfortunate that we have to deal with the issues of two neighbours but we cannot control the situation,’ he said. ‘Whether or not the situation is dangerous, that has to be assessed.’

A meeting on Monday between a joint border committee of Cambodia and Thailand did not produce satisfactory results, prompting Phnom Penh to seek the help of ASEAN in resolving the issue.

The ASEAN ministers urged its two bickering members on Sunday to exercise restraint and to settle the problem amicably.

Nearly 1,000 Cambodian troops and 500 Thai soldiers continue to face each other on the disputed territory since the tension flared a week ago.

ប្រភព៖ http://www.monstersandcritics.com/news/asiapacific/news/article_1418626.php/Thailand_Cambodia_pledge_restraint_in_border_dispute__2nd_Roundup_

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