Cambodia, Thailand Resolve Preah Vihear Temple Dispute

Tensions between Cambodia and Thailand appear to be easing after both countries agreed to pull their remaining troops out of a disputed border area near a 900-year-old temple which was the site of armed clashes last year.

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen said after meeting with Thai Defense Minister Prawit Wongsuwan that an agreement had been reached to jointly demarcate the area.

“There will be no more military confrontation in that area,” Sen said. “I told the Thai delegation that this is an historic moment. We have solved the problems today so there will be no troubled legacy for our next generations.”

Preah Vihear temple sits just inside the Cambodian border.

The International Court of Justice awarded it to Cambodia in 1962 but Thailand has resented the decision — for reasons, analysts believe, has more to do with control of the military high ground that overlooks Cambodia than with historical or cultural reasons.

Four soldiers died in an armed confrontation there last October, and the dispute was a major issue at national elections held in July.