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Saturday, August 21, 2010

UN Chief Offers to Help Thailand and Cambodia Resolve Border Dispute

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today offered to help Cambodia and Thailand resolve their differences over a disputed temple area along their common border.

Tensions escalated between the two neighbouring South-East Asian nations in July 2008 following the build-up of military forces near the Preah Vihear Temple in Cambodia.

The temple, which dates back to the 11th century, was inscribed on the World Heritage List of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization earlier that month.

The row turned deadly in October of that year when two people reportedly died during an exchange of fire between Thai and Cambodian forces near the site.

"The Secretary-General hopes that Cambodia and Thailand will resolve the dispute along their border amicably through dialogue," UN spokesperson Farhan Haq told reporters in New York.

"He stands ready to help the parties," Mr. Haq added.

Source: United Nations
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Painter selling children's art to benefit orphanage in Cambodia

Shortly after high school, Ottawa artist Jaya Krishnan discovered he had a natural gift for painting. Now, he has found a way to put that talent and passion to good use.

Originally from Malaysia, Krishnan made Ottawa his home in 1979. The self-taught artist has been producing fine art for more than 30 years and his works have been in galleries around the world.

Earlier this year, Krishnan travelled to Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia. He discovered an orphanage in Cambodia that tugged at his heartstrings and felt a strong desire to help bring joy to the lives of the children and give them an opportunity to express themselves by teaching what he knows best -- art.

"I have been very successful over the years with my career as an artist and I feel that it is time to give back," he said.

By teaching the children, who range in age from five to 16, he hopes to prevent them from getting into trouble on the streets. He also hopes it will help give them the confidence to enjoy a happy and successful life.

"The children are so eager to learn and rarely get a human's touch. A simple thing like a hug means the world to them," says Krishnan.

While in Asia, he not only taught art but also English and took part in other activities, such as soccer and singing.

"Travelling to interesting places around the world for me used to be solely for pleasure, but now I think my travels should have a purpose," says Krishnan.

On his return, he brought back paintings by his students at the Cambodian orphanage, which is near the famous ruins at Angkor Wat. The paintings are mostly watercolours, a handful painted in oil. The paintings are on display until Sunday at Snapdragon Gallery. All money raised from the sale of the paintings will go back to the orphanage.

Krishnan has done his job well. Each painting shows incredible talent and reflects everyday life in Cambodia.

Krishnan plans to keep travelling each year to different parts of Asia to continue teaching art and to help raise funds for underprivileged children and adults.

"I have been fortunate in my life," he says. "Art has found me and I have found art."

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UN chief offers to help Thailand, Cambodia resolve border dispute

UN Secretary-general Ban Ki- moon on Friday offered to help Cambodia and Thailand resolve their differences over a disputed temple area along their common border.

"The secretary-general hopes that Cambodia and Thailand will resolve the dispute along their border amicably through dialogue," UN spokesman Farhan Haq told reporters here.

"He stands ready to help the parties," Haq said at a daily news briefing in response to a press question.

Tensions escalated between the two neighboring Southeast Asian nations in July 2008 following the build-up of military forces near the Preah Vihear Temple in Cambodia.

The temple, which dates back to the 11th century, was inscribed on the World Heritage List of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) earlier that month.

The row turned deadly in October of that year when two people reportedly died during an exchange of fire between Thai and Cambodian forces near the site.

Source:Xinhua
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Swiss man arrested in Cambodia on child sex charge

PHNOM PENH, CAMBODIA (AFP) - A Swiss guesthouse owner has been arrested in Cambodia for allegedly buying sex from a juvenile boy, police said Friday.

Erich Bader was arrested on Thursday at his guesthouse, Prince Mekong Villa, in the northwestern province of Siem Reap, home to the famed Angkor Wat temples, said the town's anti-human trafficking police chief Sun Bunthong.

The 52-year-old will be charged with soliciting sex in 2009 with a 16-year-old boy, Sun Bunthong added.

Cambodia has struggled to shed its reputation as a haven for paedophiles, despite jailing or deporting dozens of foreigners for child sex crimes since 2003.
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