Thailand, Cambodia vow to keep peace on border ahead of ICJ ruling

Thailand and Cambodia vowed Monday to maintain peace and order along their border ahead of a ruling by the International Court of Justice on Nov. 11 on their territorial dispute around the ancient Preah Vihear temple.

Thai Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul and his Cambodian counterpart Hor Namhong told a joint press conference following a meeting along the border that the two countries will maintain peace at the border, whatever the ruling is.

"We will not allow the ruling to affect our good relationship," Surapong said.

Surapong added the two sides agreed to remain in contact over the world court proceedings and Thailand will follow the ICJ's ruling.

Hor Namhong said Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen has ordered Cambodian soldiers on border patrol to remain calm and patient, to prevent any misunderstanding across the border.

"We understand that the Preah Vihear conflict is about a tiny piece of land and we won't allow it to affect our longtime relationship," he added.

The two foreign ministers met for 40 minutes on the Cambodian side of the border and crossed to the Thai side to hold the press conference.

Cambodia submitted the border dispute to the ICJ in April.

In 1962, the ICJ ruled the Preah Vihear temple belonged to Cambodia, but a territorial dispute over the surrounding land intensified after the United Nations listed the temple as a World Heritage site in 2008.

Military skirmishes in the border area broke out between the two sides sporadically between 2008 and 2011, killing dozens of Thai and Cambodian soldiers and civilians.