Costa Rica brings border conflict with Nicaragua to OAS

18:49, November 04, 2010      

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The Organization of American States (OAS) on Wednesday held a hearing of the border dispute between Costa Rica and Nicaragua over a dredging project in San Juan River, an area bordering both countries.

The dredging project, run by the Nicaraguan government, is accused by Costa Rica of violating its territory and harming the environment.

During the hearing held in Washington, both countries presented their arguments to the Permanent Council of the OAS as requested by Costa Rica.

Rene Castro, Costa Rican foreign minister, first expressed his country's concern over the cleaning activities carried out by Nicaragua in San Juan River, saying its neighbor has dumped river sediment and cleared forest in protected wetlands that belong to Costa Rica.

Castro then displayed several pictures, showing the presence of Nicaraguan soldiers and a dredger on Calero Island which San Jose claims as its own territory.

In August, Costa Rica requested Nicaragua to explain its activities, but got no reply.

On Oct. 21, San Jose sent an official complaint to Nicaragua and then deployed armed forces along the river, an action the Nicaraguan government responded angrily, saying it was Costa Rican "armed forces" which illegally entered Nicaraguan territory.

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