Cambodia launches legal fight in UN court
CAMBODIA today launched a bitter legal battle before the UN’s highest court, asking it to order an immediate Thai troop withdrawal around the ancient temple of Preah Vihear, scene of heavy clashes earlier this year.
“We will ask the court to swiftly provide the provisional measures to protect the peace and avoid an escalation of the armed conflict in the area,” said Deputy Prime Minister Hor Namhong, who represents Cambodia.
“Cambodia is asking the court to implement measures to prevent further destruction of the temple and the area around it,” he told a 16-panel of judges before the International Court of Justice based in The Hague.
In February the UN appealed for a permanent ceasefire after 10 people were killed in fighting near Preah Vihear, but fresh clashes which broke out in April further west left 18 dead and prompted 85,000 civilians to flee.
The court ruled in 1962 that the temple itself belonged to Cambodia.