The Buddha Statue
Since SFII the buddha statue of Sagat's stage (Thailand) has appeared over and over again in many Street Fighter and related games. Here you can see a collection of the different looks the buddha statue had in all those Street Fighter games. The buddha statue can be seen in almost every game Sagat appears in. It is located at the Ayuthaya/Ayutthaya ruins in Thailand and it's a lying buddha.
(Ryu vs Sagat in Sagat's SSFIIX stage)
The games SFII (WW), SFII' (CE), SFII'T (HF), SSFII (NC) and SSFIIX (GC) had nearly the same backgrounds. Only a few details like the colors or the daytime were changed.
In the background you can see a building, I'd say it's a temple. It can be seen in various games next to or behind the giant buddha statue.
The Street Fighter Zero series
In Street Fighter Zero 1, 2 and 3 the statue appears in Sagat's stages.
(SFZ1 stages of Adon, Dan and Sagat, all showing the buddha statue)
In SFZ1 Capcom reused the background for Adon and Dan's stages. The whole game seems like they were in a hurry and just wanted to finish the game as fast as possible. Later SFZ2 overwrote SFZ1 and made it redundant. Before SFZ1 Capcom had only reused stages in games but not within one game.
The best appearance of the statue was probably in Sagat's SFZ2 stage. It looked almost real.
(Sagat's SFZ2 stage)
On the left side you can see the big temple building. There is also a little bit of the small red building visible between the upper and his forearm. Both buildings have appeared before (see pics above) and also showed up in Adon's SFZ2 stage.
(Adon's SFZ2 stage)
(left: red temple in Adon's SFZ1 stage; right: red temple in Adon's SFZ2 stage)
If I had to pick the SF game with the best backgrounds I'd say SFZ2. But let's not forget SFZ3, the game with the most stupid story of all times (of all games, not just Street Fighter games).
Again Sagat had the buddha statue in his stage, same pose but like always it looked a bit differently.
This time though something was absolutely new. I can only guess what went on in those crazy minds of the authors of SFZ3, but let's give it a try. Inspired by the anime SFIIAM (the movie that once started the whole Street Fighter Zero series), they decided to turn the giant buddha statue into a big ass robot! Until now it was just there but suddenly it's a huge Shadaloo robot with a metal skelleton.
Complete nonsence you say? Yes that's SFZ3. It fucks up everything that happened in SFII since it takes place before SFII.
Thanks to vasili10 for translating Sagat's stage info from Complete File Street Fighter II:
Thailand (Sagat) Ayuthaya Ruins
Here at the Thai ruins the past and the present flow into existing as one and the same.
Amidst intervals of rigorous training, alone in meditation Sagat mentally trains bitterly....
"You're Sagat, eh. As is your beyond rumored true ability."
A newly become challenger appeared.
"You only saw my true ability seen through you, you are also likely a suitable rival to utterly defeat. However, that today is over. Not going easy on you, come at me!"
Until that day which before his eyes Ryu & Ken be utterly defeated, Sagat's training will not be to proclaim as over...
Click here for pictures of the temples and statues at the Ayutthaya ruins in Thailand.