Phnom Penh (FN), May 23 – Cambodian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation recently sent a diplomatic note to the Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs requesting the Vietnamese government to relocate its military bases from the disagreed border area.
The note came after the Vietnamese military setup 31 camps along the Cambodia-Vietnam border of Kandal-An Giang provinces, which has not been agreed by the border commission of the two countries. The military camps were set up on 18 March 2020, after Vietnam restricted its border entry to prevent the spread of the disease.
Foreign Ministry spokesperson Koy Kuong told Fresh News that in this case, Cambodian authorities had visited and requested the Vietnamese military to move away from the area, but so far only three areas have been relocated.
Since Vietnam has yet relocated its camps from the border, Cambodian Ministry of Foreign Affairs set a diplomatic note on the Vietnamese side on 13 May 2020 as follows:
1. The presence of the Vietnamese military along the disputed border violates Article 8 of the Joint Declaration on 17 January 1995 and paragraph 5 of Article 3 of the 2005 Supplementary Treaty and other border agreements, which were agreed by Cambodia and Vietnam.
2. Vietnam must remove all the tents and withdraw military forces from the upper area and immediately cease all activities and maintain the geographical environment in the area until the border committees issued a border agreement on the area.
3. Vietnam must ensure that such activities do not happen in the future in order to maintain good relations, existing traditional friendship and comprehensive cooperation between the two countries.
Kandal Provincial Governor Kong Sophorn also sent a letter to Nguyen Thanh Binh, Chairman of Vietnam's An Giang Provincial Committee, to maintain the situation along the border.
In response, Nguyen Thanh Binh clearly explained the measures taken to curb the illegal entry and the prevention of the spread of the disease. However, he claimed that An Giang Province had instructed the competent authorities to relocate all the tents setting up along border and that the relocation will not impact border management and disease control.
However, according to the latest report obtained by Fresh News on Saturday morning, the Vietnamese side had just moved three tents along the border.