Sunday, June 26, 2011

Thailand quits heritage body amid temple row

BANGKOK - THAILAND has withdrawn from UNESCO'S World Heritage Convention because of a row with Cambodia over a disputed 900-year-old temple, a top official said.

Thailand announced its decision at a meeting in Paris on Saturday, its representative to the talks, Natural Resource and Environment Minister Suwit Khunkitti, told Thai media in the French capital.

'We withdraw to say we do not accept any decision from this meeting,' he said.

The World Heritage Convention sets the criteria for UNESCO's list of the world's most important cultural and natural assets.

Suwit said that Thailand took the decision because the Convention agreed to put Cambodia's proposed management plan for the Preah Vihear temple on its agenda.

Preah Vihear is at the centre of a border conflict between the neighbouring countries that has left 28 people dead in two episodes of fierce fighting between their armies earlier this year. -- AFP

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