Phnom Penh (FN), Aug. 2 – Government spokesperson Phay Siphan congratulated and thanked US Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo for providing justice to Cambodia by distrusting the fabricated reports published the Wall Street Journal over accused Chinese military presence in Cambodia.
“I would like to express my appreciation and thanks to US Secretary of State HE Mike Pompeo for providing justice to the Royal Government of Cambodia, headed by Samdech Techo Hun Sen, who has always dedicated his life and sacrifice everything to defense the nation and sovereignty and put efforts to indiscriminately befriend every nation in the world and not interfere in their internal affairs,” Phay Siphan wrote on his Facebook on 2 August 2019.
Speaking at a press availability after the US-ASEAN Ministerial meeting in Bangkok on Thursday, 1 August, Mike Pompeo stated that, “Cambodia refuted reports that it is allowing a Chinese military installation to be built on its territory. The United States welcomes Cambodia’s strong defense of its national sovereignty, and we encourage other nations in the region to follow Cambodia’s lead in protecting it.”
In response to such fake news and fabricated reports, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen announced through Fresh News on 22 July 2019 that the report on “Cambodia-China signing deal to use military base in the kingdom” is the worst form of fabricated news against Cambodia.
He urged that, “It’s time to stop using distorted news about China’s military presence in Cambodia against us.”
Constitution of Cambodia determines no foreign military bases on the territory.
Article 53 of the Cambodian Constitution stipulates that the Kingdom of Cambodia shall not permit any foreign military base on its territory and shall not have its own military base abroad, except within the framework of a United Nations' request.
A Chinese defense ministry spokesperson Wu Qian also denounced a fake news published by the Wall Street Journal.
“It is a fake news and fabricated reports. China and Cambodia only have cooperation on military trainings and logistic supports and that such bilateral cooperation does not target any third country,” Wu Qian addressed to the press on 24 July 2019.
Cambodian defense spokesperson Chhum Socheat led a big group of 73 journalists to conduct fact-finding mission to the kingdom’s Ream Naval Base on 26 July 2019.
Besides Fresh News, there are representatives of AP, Reuters, Kyodo News, VOA, Cambodia China Times, AFP, Xinhua, Cambodia China Friendship Radio, and Japanese TV.
Media representatives confirmed shortly after visit that there is no presences of Chinese armed forces at Ream Naval Base.
“What the western media published was politically motivated and a falsified truth about Cambodia,” they said.