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Costa Rica to present case against Nicaragua in international court

By the CNN Wire Staff
Costa Rican foreign minister Rene Castro asked Nicaragua to withdraw troops from disputed land between the nations.
Costa Rican foreign minister Rene Castro asked Nicaragua to withdraw troops from disputed land between the nations.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Costa Rica's suit asks the court to stop "the construction of a canal on Costa Rican soil"
  • Nicaragua denies its troops are in Costa Rican territory
  • The dispute involves Calero Island, a parcel of land on the Atlantic coast
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(CNN) -- Costa Rica will take its border dispute with Nicaragua to international court Tuesday.

In a three-day hearing at the International Court of Justice in The Hague, Netherlands, Costa Rican officials will make their case that their territory was invaded by Nicaraguan troops.

Nicaragua denies its troops are in Costa Rican territory.

Tensions between Nicaragua and Costa Rica have flared over Calero Island, a parcel of land on the Atlantic coast.

In November, Costa Rica's foreign ministry said the country had filed a lawsuit in the court to end a situation that "threatens imminent and irreparable harm" to Costa Rica. The suit asks the court to stop "the construction of a canal on Costa Rican soil," according to the statement.

Costa Rica is asking Nicaragua to withdraw troops from the area, "so that a harm today in a little piece of Costa Rican territory does not expand," Costa Rican Foreign Minister Rene Castro said.

A spokesman for Nicaragua's ambassador to Costa Rica declined to comment on the case.

Costa Rica claims that in addition to the Nicaraguan troops, a dredging project in the river is dumping sediment on its side of the border, and that a Costa Rican flag in the area was replaced with a Nicaraguan flag.

Nicaragua has accused Costa Rica of breaking diplomatic relations between the countries.

Journalist Djenane Villanueva contributed to this report.