Panamanian president urges Nicaragua, Costa Rica to resolve conflict

11:30, November 05, 2010      

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Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli on Thursday urged Costa Rica and Nicaragua to find a solution to their territorial conflict at the San Juan border river.

"One cannot invade a country in the way it was done," Martinelli said, referring to Costa Rica's claim that the Nicaraguan army had invaded its territory.

Martinelli said both governments should sit down to solve their problems in a pacific way with the mediation of the international community.

"Costa Rica has all my support, because we cannot allow any country to interrupt in other's business with military forces," Martinelli said.

On Monday, Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla asked the Organization of American States (OAS) to hold an emergent meeting of its Permanent Council to discuss the situation.

Chinchilla also demanded that OAS send an international observers' mission to the region to verify the situation.

OAS agreed to send an observers' mission headed by its Secretary-General Jose Miguel Insulza.

Costa Rica protested for the first time when Nicaragua was cleaning a river in the border zone, as Costa Rica complained that Nicaraguan troops had entered Costa Rican territory.

Nicaragua has criticized Costa Rica for overreacting in this situation due to political aims.

The San Juan River runs much of its 120 miles along a natural border with Costa Rica. For more than a century, the two neighbors had sparred over navigation and fishing rights. Their disputes were mostly settled in a July 2009 case in the International Court of Justice.

Source: Xinhua


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