UN wants regional neighbours to help

As expected, UN peacekeepers are not on the way as the Security Council tells disputing sides to get help from the region.

The UN Security Council called Monday for a "permanent ceasefire" between Thailand and Cambodia.


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UN urges 'permanent' Thai-Cambodia ceasefire

Pierre-Antoine Donnet 

UNITED NATIONS, AFP — The UN Security Council called Monday for a "permanent ceasefire" between Thailand and Cambodia after a border dispute erupted into deadly clashes last week around a Hindu temple.

Council president Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti of Brazil made the call after a closed door session with the foreign ministers of Cambodia, Thailand and Indonesia, which has attempted to mediate the conflict.

"Members of the Security Council urge the parties to establish a permanent ceasefire and to implement it fully," she said.

She said council members expressed "great concern" over the clashes and "called on the two sides to display maximum restraint and avoid any action that may aggravate the situation."

Cambodian Foreign Minister Hor Namhong had gone into the meeting seeking a "permanent ceasefire" while Thailand, represented by Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya, had insisted that the two neighbors settle the dispute among themselves.

Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegwa, who has tried to mediate the dispute, also took part in the Security Council session.

Viotti said the council supported the Indonesian mediation efforts.

"The idea is to work in synergy with the regional efforts – and right now regional efforts are in full force – and resolve the situation peacefully and through effective dialogue," she said.

The two Southeast Asian neighbors blame each other for the crisis, which has left at least 10 dead, including seven Cambodians, in clashes with heavy weapons last week.

They are fighting over a border area that surrounds the Preah Vihear temple, an 11th century cliff-top ruin that belongs to Cambodia but whose designation as a World Heritage site has touched off the ire of Thai nationalists.

While Cambodia won support for a permanent ceasefire, the council did not endorse its request for the deployment of UN peacekeepers into the contested area.

The Cambodian foreign minister accused Thailand of using internationally outlawed bombs and submunitions in the conflict.

"We deny all of that and we did not shoot first. It was a response," Kasit responded.

The Thai minister said there was no need for UN peacekeepers, and said that option had not been discussed in the Security Council session.

Indonesia's foreign minister said "obviously, this is a matter that will have to be resolved in final analysis bilaterally between the two sides but it does not mean there is not a space and a role for regional countries to play."

Thailand has laid the blame for the crisis on UNESCO's decision to declare the temple ruins a World Heritage site even though the land around it is disputed.

The World Court ruled in 1962 that the temple belonged to Cambodia but both countries claim ownership of a 4.6-square-kilometre surrounding area.

"The war was not caused by the listing of the temple, but by Thailand's invasion of Cambodian territory," said Koy Kuong, the Cambodian spokesman. "They want not only the territory, but also the temple."

permanent – happening or existing for a long time or for all time in the future ถาวร  
ceasefire – an agreement to top fighting for a period of time, especially in order to discuss permanent peace การหยุดยิง
UN Security Council – one of the main agencies of the United Nations and in the maintenance of international peace and security  สภาความมั่นคงแห่งสหประชาชาติ
border – the official line separating two areas, regions or countries  เขตแดน อาณาเขต
dispute – a serious disagreement การโต้เถียง, ความขัดแย้ง
erupt – to start suddenly ปะทุขึ้น
clash – a fight or battle between two groups of people การต่อสู้ด้วยกำลัง
session – a formal meeting of an institution such as a parliament or a court การประชุม
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
conflict – an angry disagreement between people or groups ความขัดแย้ง
establish – to start something ก่อตั้ง, จัดตั้ง
implement – to make something such as an idea, plan, system or law start to work and be used นำแผนหรือนโยบายมาปฏิบัติ
concern – a worry ความกังวล
display – to show signs of something, especially a quality or feeling แสดง
maximum – the most possible ที่สูงสุด ที่มากที่สุด
restraint – the quality of behaving calmly and with control การอดกลั้น
aggravate – to make a bad situation or condition worse ทำให้แย่ลง
situation – all the circumstances and things that are happening at a particular time and in a particular place  สถานการณ์
insist – to say very firmly that something must happen or must be done ยืนกราน
settle – to reach a formal agreement that ends a disagreement ทำข้อตกลง
synergy – the extra energy, power, success, etc. that is achieved by two or more people or companies working together, instead of on their own การทำงานร่วมกัน, การประสานกำลังกัน
resolve – to solve a problem, or to find a satisfactory way of dealing with it  แก้ไขปัญหา
effectively – producing the intended result ได้ผลดี
dialogue – formal talks between opposing countries, political groups, etc. การสนทนา, การอภิปราย
blame – to say or think that someone or something did something wrong or is responsible for something bad happening ตำหนิ
crisis – a situation that has reached and extremely difficult or dangerous point ช่วงวิกฤต
surround – to be everywhere around something ล้อมรอบ
cliff – a steep side of an area of high land  หน้าผา
ruin – the remains of a building that has been badly damaged or destroyed ซากปรักหักพัง
designation – formally chosen for something การแต่งตั้งให้เป็น
World Heritage site – a place, building, structure, etc. that has been determined by the UN to be of great historical or culture value and is given a special protected status โบราณสถานที่เป็นมรดกโลก
touch off – to cause something to start, especially something bad ก่อให้เกิด
ire – anger ความกริ้วโกรธ, ความโมโห
nationalist – a person who has a great love for and pride in their country; a person who has a feeling that their country is better than any other ผู้รักชาติ, ผู้ที่มีแนวความคิดชาตินิยม
endorse – to support; to approve รับรอง
deployment – the movement of soldiers or equipment to a place where they can be used when they are needed การเคลื่อนกำลังพลพร้อมอาวุธไปอยู่ในตำแหน่งที่พร้อมจะต่อสู้ (ทางทหาร)
contested area – disputed area; an area claimed by two or more countries, groups or people  พื้นที่ที่เป็นกรณีพิพาท
outlaw – to make something illegal  ทำให้เป็นสิ่งผิดกฎหมาย
submunitions – smaller weapons carried as a warhead by a missile or other carrier and released as the carrier approaches its target
deny – to not allow someone to have or do something ไม่ยอมรับ, ปฏิเสธ
option – a choice; something that you can choose in a particular situation ทางเลือก
obviously – clearly เห็นได้ชัด, อย่างชัดแจ้ง
in the final analysis – ultimately; finally, after a series of things have happened ท้ายที่สุด, ตอนสุดท้าย, ในที่สุด
bilateral – involving two groups or countries สองข้าง, เกี่ยวกับกลุ่มทางการเมืองสองกลุ่ม
role – the position or purpose that someone or something has in a situation, organisation, society or relationship บทบาท
rule – (of a court or other group with similar authority) to make and announce a decision ตัดสิน, พิพากษา, ชี้ขาด
invasion – an occasion when one country’s army goes into another country to take control of land by force การลุกล้ำอาณาบริเวณ
territory – an area of land controlled by a particular country, leader or army อาณาบริเวณ  อาณาเขตประเทศ

About the author

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Writer: Terry Fredrickson
Position: Education Marketing and Support Manager