The Thai and Cambodian prime ministers largely talked past each other instead of to each other as they discussed the border dispute.
No smiles and no meeting of minds - as Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono strongarmed Prime Ministers Abhisit Vejjajiva (centre) and Hun Sen (right) into the same room, but at the end, they were still blaming each other. (AFP Photo)
PMs refuse to give ground
Asean hopes for border resolution lie in tatters
Achara Ashayagachat & Agencies
JAKARTA : The Thai and Cambodian leaders emerged from their meeting at the Asean summit yesterday pointing the blame at each other for the border dispute and dashing hopes by host Indonesia for an early solution.
The leaders stood firm in their positions during the one-hour meeting, which observers acknowledged was a failure.
Although both sides have agreed to allow their foreign ministers to discuss the issue further today, observers were sceptical they would make any headway.
Kasit Piromya and Cambodian Foreign Minister Hor Nam Hong are expected to meet at 3.30pm.
Almost immediately after the leaders' meeting mediated by Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on the sidelines of the 18th Asean summit, the Thai and Cambodian prime ministers called press conferences to point the blame at each other.
It was the first time Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen had met since the border clashes resumed last month, killing 18 people.
Mr Abhisit announced before his departure from Bangkok for the summit that he would not meet Hun Sen unless Cambodia withdrew its troops and residents from the area around Preah Vihear temple. Hun Sen said that Cambodia regarded Preah Vihear temple and its surrounds as Cambodian territory.
"We will not withdraw our troops from our own territory," he said.
Cambodia, he added, had agreed with Indonesia's offer to send observers to the disputed border area.
Thailand, by contrast, had created additional conditions by demanding Cambodia withdraw troops and that the General Border Committee discuss the matter.
Hun Sen said Cambodia would follow UN Security Council guidelines in seeking Asean assistance to settle the dispute.
The widening clashes at Ta Muen and Ta Kwai temples near Surin would be settled through bilateral mechanisms, he said.
Mr Abhisit said Cambodia's approach was inconsistent.
The countries had reached a Memorandum of Understanding in 2000 as a blueprint for solving their differences over their border.
But instead of trying to solve the problem bilaterally, Cambodia had tried to internationalise the Preah Vihear dispute by taking a case to the Security Council and the International Court of Justice.
"Why do they need a different approach? The problem arises due to the movements of troops along the border. The talks on the border conflict and other details on the location of the observers should be handled as one package," Mr Abhisit said.
The Thai conditions were not new. Indonesia had been informed about them four or five times previously.
strongarm – using threats in order to make people do what you want
give ground – to allow somebody to have an advantage; to lose an advantage for yourself เสียเปรียบ
border – the official line separating two areas, regions or countries เขตแดน อาณาเขต
resolution – solving a problem, or to finding a satisfactory way of dealing with it การแก้ไขปัญหา
tatters – ruined or badly damaged; torn in many places ฉีกขาดรุ่งริ่ง
emerge – to come out of ออกจาก
summit – a meeting or a series of meetings between leaders of two or more countries การประชุมสุดยอด
dispute – a serious disagreement การโต้เถียง, ความขัดแย้ง
dash hopes – to make it impossible for someone to do what they hoped to do ทำให้ไม่สมหวัง, ทำให้ผิดหวัง, ทำให้เสียกำลังใจ
host – a country, city, group, person, etc. which provides the space and other things necessary for a special event เจ้าภาพ
solution – a way of solving a problem or dealing with a difficult situation วิธีแก้ปัญหา
stand firm – to refuse to change your opinion or policy despite pressure from other people
observer – a person who watches and analyses a situation ผู้สังเกตการณ์
acknowledge – to accept or admit that something exists, is true or is real ยอมรับ
issue – a subject that people discuss or argue about ประเด็น
sceptical – having doubts about something that other people think is true or right สงสัย
headway – progress ความคืบหน้า
immediately – happening right after something else with no delay; right away ทันที
mediate – to talk to two separate people or groups involved in a disagreement to try to help them to agree or find a solution to their problems ไกล่เกลี่ย
on the sidelines – outside of a event, i.e., not an actual part of the event
press conference – an official meeting where someone makes a formal statement about a particular issue or event to journalists and answers their questions about it การแถลงข่าว
clash – a brief fight between two or more people การปะทะกันสองฝ่าย
resume – to begin again after stopping for a period of time เริ่มอีกครั้ง, กลับมาอีกครั้ง
departure – leaving การออกจาก
withdraw – taking or move out or back การถอนตัวจาก
residents – people who live in a particular area ประชาชนที่อาศัยในท้องที่
regard – to consider or have an opinion about something or someone เห็นว่า,ถือว่า
surrounds – the area around something บริเวณโดยรอบ
territory – an area of land controlled by a particular country, leader or army อาณาบริเวณ อาณาเขตประเทศ
troops – soldiers, especially in large numbers กองทหาร
offer – an act of saying that you are willing to do something for somebody or give something to somebody เสนอเพื่อให้พิจารณา
contrast – a noticeable difference ความแตกต่าง
condition – something that must be done before another thing can happen เงื่อนไข
demand – to ask for something very firmly เรียกร้อง, ต้องการ
UN Security Council – one of the main agencies of the United Nations and in the maintenance of international peace and security สภาความมั่นคงแห่งสหประชาชาติ
guidelines – official instructions or advice about how to do something สิ่งที่ช่วยแนะแนวทางให้ปฏิบัติ
settle – to end a dispute or disagreement, in this case, forcefully ขจัดให้เสร็จสิ้น, จัดการ
bilateral – involving two groups or countries สองข้าง, เกี่ยวกับกลุ่มทางการเมืองสองกลุ่ม
mechanism – a method or a system for achieving something กลไก, วิธีการทำงาน, วิธีการ
inconsistent – if two statements, etc. are inconsistent, or one is inconsistent with the other, they cannot both be true because they give the facts in a different way; tending to change too often; not staying the same ซึ่งขัดแย้งกัน, ซึ่งไม่สอดคล้องกัน
memorandum of understanding (MOU) – a document used to describe a form of a written agreement between two or more groups, countries, etc. The document is not as strong as a contract but outlines a commitment between the two to work together toward the same purpose or goals
blueprint – an early plan or design which explains how something might be achieved แผนงานที่ละเอียด
approach – a particular way of doing something or thinking about something วิธีการทำให้ถึงจุดหมาย
arise – to happen as a result of a particular situation เกิดขึ้น
due to – because of เนื่องจาก
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