White Center protesters raise awareness of Cambodia-Thailand dispute
(Also published on WSB)
You’ve heard a lot about what’s going on in the Middle East – but have you heard about what’s going on in Southeast Asia? A border clash between Cambodia and Thailand is about to come to a head in front of the United Nations, and today Cambodian-Americans came to White Center and West Seattle for a demonstration aimed at bringing it to your attention and demanding the U.S. government get involved. WCN/WSB contributor Deanie Schwarz noticed the protest, took these photos and talked to spokesperson Sokmakara Hang, who explained that the demonstrators came from all over the state, and came here because this area has the state’s highest concentration of Cambodian-Americans. They stood on corners all around 16th/Roxbury:
Also on hand was Meach Sovannara from the Khmer Post Media Center in Long Beach (Calif.). The dispute is over a border area near the Preah Vihear Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage site that is more than a millennium old. The Cambodian-Americans say the most recent skirmishes killed Cambodian soldiers, and are demanding that the Thai government stop what they call an “invasion.” They want United Nations intervention as well as President Obama and the rest of the international community. According to this story from the Bangkok Post, this issue will be brought to the UN Security Council on Monday, and reportedly Cambodia will claim it’s at war with Thailand. There’s more background on the century-long conflict over the temple in this Jakarta Post story.
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