Asia-Pacific

Thailand and Cambodia to accept monitors for border row

A Cambodian soldier walks past the Preah Vihear temple
Image caption The area around the temple has been the scene of numerous clashes in the past

Thailand and Cambodia have agreed to allow Indonesian observers to monitor disputed border territory that has been the scene of deadly fighting between the two nations, an official says.

The agreement was reached at a meeting of the Asean regional group in Jakarta.

Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa said unarmed observers would be on both sides of the border.

At least eight people were killed earlier this month in clashes near the 11th Century temple of Preah Vihear.

The temple - high in mountains which form the border between the two nations - was awarded to Cambodia in 1962 by the international court.

But both sides claim ownership of the surrounding area, and there have been several skirmishes there in recent years.

The most recent violence was in early February, when each side accused the other of violating its sovereignty.

Reports from Jakarta said up to 40 military and civilian observers would be sent to the area.

"This is an observer team, not a peacekeeping or peace enforcement team. The observer team will be unarmed," Mr Natalegawa said.

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