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Preah Vihear

 
Author meltwaterfalls
Partaker
#1 | Posted: 30 Jul 2010 07:54 
As it seems to be a fairly contentious issue I thought it may also be worth having a discussion thread on Preah Vihear.

Also, as I am planning on visiting in November any additional information on the present situation or travelling logistics would be greatly received.

These are the bits from the other forum that have already been mentioned on the
other thread, hope you don't mind me quoting.

winterkjm:
I have not heard of any country making threats to withdraw from the World Heritage Committee before? (I assume there were other cases?) The site of the Temple of Preah Vihear has been judged to be within the Cambodia border numerous times. Also it is Khymer architecture, not Thai. Nationalists in Thailand are argueing that because of a potential buffer zone, the site should be listed as a transnational WHS? If this is not done, apparently their position is we will no longer support UNESCO.

http://www1.voanews.com/english/news/asia/Thailand-Threatens-to-Pull-Out-of-UN-World- Heritage-Committee-Over-Border-Dispute-99549969.html



Durian:
In my opinion, Preah Vihear case is a classic example of people who know WHS and people who do not. Most of the news I read are all about the temple, but the real hot issue is the buffer zone which included the dispute area of both countries - Thailand and Cambodia.

When I studied international realtionship, ICJ's Preah Vihear case is an exemple of estoppel of silence in border dispute, I think Thailand learns the lesson and that's why they threat to withdraw WHC as a loud protest.

However, if we look at Jerusalem, we should understand that being a WHS is not about border or soverign claim, but really on protection of cultural heritage. Preah Vihear Temple is belong to Cambodia, the area of buffer zone maybe belong to Thailand, and for for sure Preah Vihear is belong to the whole humankind, but if being WHS will cause conflict and war, I think WHC have to think carefully before made any decision.

Author winterkjm
Partaker
#2 | Posted: 30 Jul 2010 13:35 
They seem to have come to an agreement for now. Brazil saved the day!

http://www.34whc.brasilia2010.org.br/?p=2237&lang=en

Author Durian
Partaker
#3 | Posted: 30 Jul 2010 21:20 
meltwaterfalls:
Also, as I am planning on visiting in November any additional information on the present situation or travelling logistics would be greatly received.


I heard that Preah Vihear is closed for safety and now it's turned to be a military zone from Thailand side, for Cambodia, I think the situation should be the same.

Author meltwaterfalls
Partaker
#4 | Posted: 1 Aug 2010 07:41 
Thanks for this, I had heard that it was only the Thai side that was closed, but that the Cambodian side was still open if tricky to get to.
Hopefully it will settle down a little in the next few months, maybe the agreement in Brasillia will help.

Author meltwaterfalls
Partaker
#5 | Posted: 20 Aug 2010 10:07 | Edited by: meltwaterfalls 
I just got sent this by a friend.

I hope people don't mind me posting more light-hearted stuff on here, but this could be surprisingly realistic.

http://asiapacific.anu.edu.au/newmandala/2010/08/20/thailand-cambodia-agreement/

Author Durian
Partaker
#6 | Posted: 21 Aug 2010 07:18 
Nice, meltwaterfalls! Hope the news is true, at least this may make your Preah Vihear travel plan more possible!

Author meltwaterfalls
Partaker
#7 | Posted: 6 Nov 2010 22:53 
Just to update on this one. Preah Vihear is becoming more and more accessable from the Cambodian side. We visited as a day trip from Siem Reap yesterday, we hired taxis to take us to the bottom of the hill and then got in the back of a jeep to finish the climb. the whole round trip took about 12 hours.

The taxi took about 4 hours to get to the base and cost us $70 round trip. However this was mostly made possible by my friends speaking some Khemer, not sure how easy it is at the moment to sort this out with out a little bit of local knoweldge.
However the roads are rapidly being imporoved, both to promote the site and also to allow better military access. I guess thius place will become more and more accessible very quickly and will soon feature on the tours available from Travel Agents around Siem Reap. It is certainly much more accessiible now than it was when my guide book was written only 2 years ago, that suggested it wouyld take at least 2 day, if not more to get there and back.

The jeep up cost $25 or $5 a person if there were more than 5. There are also 'motos' that can take you up for $5 per person. It is a very long and steep climb, slightly hair-raising but very enjoyable.

Access from the Thai side is very much off limits, and from speaking to the solidiers at Preah Vihear it seems that this will not change in the next few years.

The site is pretty much a military camp now, and the walk to the temple goes between machine gun turrets on the front line.

A really unique experince!

Author meltwaterfalls
Partaker
#8 | Posted: 30 Nov 2010 12:46 
It seems my information was not particulaly accurate and Preah Vihear will re-open to visitors from the Thai side of the border.

Disputed border set to reopen

I guess I should have gone further up the chain of command!

Thanks for sending the link through Els.

Author winterkjm
Partaker
#9 | Posted: 4 Feb 2011 14:58 
Bad news from the Thailand and Cambodian Border at Preah Vihear. Perhaps Preah Vihear should be de-listed? Nationalistic notions and pride are too often a terrible thing.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20110204/wl_afp/cambodiathailandconflict

Author winterkjm
Partaker
#10 | Posted: 6 Apr 2011 06:14 
Thailand resorts to "cluster bombing" in and around World Heritage site. Unbelievable.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12983127

Author meltwaterfalls
Partaker
#11 | Posted: 6 Apr 2011 12:40 
winterkjm:
Thailand resorts to "cluster bombing" in and around World Heritage site. Unbelievable.


Wow that really is incredible. There were mine clearance teams when I was there in November last year, if it does reopen anytime soon, it really isn't a place you would want to stray off too far.

Can't belive they would use cluster bombs.

Author winterkjm
Partaker
#12 | Posted: 23 Apr 2011 12:14 
Cambodia claims Thailand used chemical weapons in its most recent attack. the attacks occured near another Kymer temple about 100 miles from Preah Vihear.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110423/ap_on_re_as/as_thailand_cambodia_clash

Author Durian
Partaker
#13 | Posted: 11 Nov 2013 07:29 
International Court of Justice finally give an interpretation judgement today

http://m.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-24897805

Full Judgement
http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/files/151/17704.pdf

Author meltwaterfalls
Partaker
#14 | Posted: 12 Nov 2013 05:48 
That is pretty much as expected. I must admit I never really got a grasp on the Thai claims. From my experience of the site Politically, Geographically and Historically it was Cambodian, but a keen knowledge of Thai and Cambodian nationalism isn't a strong point of mine (about 8,000km too far east for my studies), so maybe I missed something obvious.

Hopefully it is good news and it won't be on the front line any more and people can start visiting again, it really is a wonderful site.

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