February 17, 2011 The United Nations (UN) Security Council called Thailand and Cambodia to ceasefire and begin talks that could end the border Hindu temple-related dispute.
The call was issued after the Security Council held a closed-doors meeting with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and representatives from Thailand and Cambodia.
The call was made by Brazilian Ambassador Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti, this month’s president of the UN Security Council. The council’s president said that both sides should refrain from taking further actions that could worsen the situation.
“The members of the Security Council called on the two sides to display maximum restraint and avoid any action that may aggravate the situation. The members of the Security Council further urged the parties to establish a permanent ceasefire and to implement it fully and resolve the situation peacefully and through effective dialogue,” said the ambassador.
The conflict between the two countries is related to the ancient Preah Vihear temple on the border, which is located on a Cambodian cliff, but has the most accessible entrance on Thailand’s land. The dispute began this month and has already brought the death of five people.
Border clashes have, according to the ASEAN, killed both civilians and members of the military. The association further added that each country accuses the other of firing first.