Thailand / Cambodia: Ceasefire allows return of displaced on both sides
|Publisher||Norwegian Refugee Council/Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (NRC/IDMC)|
|Publication Date||6 May 2011|
|Cite as||Norwegian Refugee Council/Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (NRC/IDMC), Thailand / Cambodia: Ceasefire allows return of displaced on both sides, 6 May 2011, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4dc7d4262.html [accessed 8 March 2014]|
|Disclaimer||This is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.|
Villagers displaced by the latest round of fighting between Thailand and Cambodia have continued to return to their homes as tensions on the disputed border have eased following a ceasefire agreed at the end of April. However they have faced difficulties including damaged property, unexploded ordnance, and there is a risk of renewed fighting. The hostilities, which broke out on 22 April and lasted for a week, resulted in the displacement of between 60,000 and 85,000 people on both sides of the border. The fighting was concentrated around two disputed temples 150 kilometres west of the Preah Vihear temple, where fighting had temporarily displaced some 30,000 people in early February. The temple was awarded to Cambodia in 1962 by an international ruling but both countries have since claimed ownership of land around the temple.
At least 24,000 of the 37,000 people reported displaced on the Thai side sought refuge in a total of 26 schools in three north-eastern provinces. 11,000 of the 26,000 people reported displaced on the Cambodian side took shelter in Samrong in Oddar Meanchey province, where they were provided with relief assistance by the Red Cross as well as local and international NGOs. On 6 May, Thai and Cambodian NGOs jointly called on ASEAN leaders to deploy international observers in the disputed areas and provide humanitarian assistance to the people displaced.