Mar 25, 2011
Phnom Penh - A Cambodian government official reiterated Friday that Phnom Penh wanted Indonesian observers stationed on its northern border with Thailand near the flashpoint temple of Preah Vihear.
Koy Kuong, the spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said comments made by his Thai counterpart this week had suggested neither Phnom Penh nor Bangkok had agreed to monitors being deployed.
Koy Kuong said that was 'completely contrary to reality.'
'Cambodia has immediately given its acceptance of the Indonesian observers to the Cambodian side and has already indicated the coverage area for their deployment,' he said.
'It is the Thai side that has rejected acceptance of the observers on Thai soil,' Koy Kuong said.
Vietnamese Foreign Minister Pham Gia Khiem called this week on both nations to find a peaceful solution that was in accordance with international law.
Vietnam also welcomed upcoming talks between Cambodia and Thailand on their border dispute.
The Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN), to which all four countries belong, has taken the reins in mediating negotiations. The two countries are to meet in Indonesia, the group's current chair, to discuss the issue on April 7.
Thai and Cambodian troops clashed February 4-7 near Preah Vihear temple, a world heritage site, killing at least 10 people.
The International Court of Justice ruled in 1962 that the temple belonged to Cambodia but stopped short of determining the border demarcation in the contested area.
Both countries claim a 4.6-square-kilometre plot of land near the temple, which has been included under Cambodia's management plan for UNESCO's World Heritage Committee.
Both sides have beefed up their forces near the temple since July 2008, leading to several border skirmishes over the past two and a half years.