News / Asia

Cambodia Urges Closer ASEAN Ties With China

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (L) meets with Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen in Phnom Penh, August 21, 2013.
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (L) meets with Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen in Phnom Penh, August 21, 2013.
Cambodia's foreign minister says a special meeting between ASEAN ministers and China is "crucial," following meetings with his Chinese counterpart this week.

Cambodian Foreign Minister Hor Namhong met Thursday with Wang Yi, who was on a two-day visit for bilateral talks on security, economics and trade. Wang told reporters China is interested in protecting Cambodia from "outside" interests.

Hor Namhong says ASEAN ministers should consider a closer relationship with China as they head into talks aimed at easing tensions over the South China Sea next week in Beijing.

"The special meeting of ASEAN foreign ministers with China is crucial to consolidate friendship and strategic cooperation between ASEAN and China," he said.

The meeting in Beijing follows a recent ASEAN foreign affairs ministers meeting during which they said they would speak with "one voice" with China. The Cambodian foreign minister did not attend that meeting.

Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam have overlapping claims with China in the South China Sea, which has led to maritime tensions, including standoffs between vessels.

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Cambodia's close relationship with China came under scrutiny last year, during a major ASEAN summit in Phnom Penh.

Cambodia appeared to be working in China's interests over the South China Sea issue, where several ASEAN nations have disputed claims with their larger neighbor.

At the end of that meeting, ASEAN ministers were, for the first time in history, unable to agree on the language of a joint declaration, a signal of ongoing controversy among ministers.

The sea is a major international thoroughfare with oil and gas riches and has become a serious stumbling block for ASEAN affairs and Asian security.

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Comment Sorting
by: John Lone
August 25, 2013 2:19 PM
Closer ASEAN Ties With China? why anyone want closer tie with china when it try to rob your water and islands belong to its member. ASEAN should coordinate each others to deter chinese aggression instead building closer tie. You cannot reward candy to a bully kid for misbehavior, instead it deserved to be spanking.

by: Igor from: Russia
August 23, 2013 5:36 AM
We all knows that Cambodia has received billions of dollars from China to do what China wants it to do. But it is too soon for China to be happy. The three-faced nature of Cambodia remains unchanged. Will China have enough money to bribe Cambodia for ever. Not at all. Cambodia should depart from ASEAN because it no longer stands for ASEAN.
In Response

by: Sovann from: Canada
August 23, 2013 10:59 PM

Those monies are not aids, but cash paid to buy what is left of Cambodia. Whether it be natural resources, land or political favour.

Because of the geopolitical nature of Cambodia, she has been in a very tough position, to be wedged between much larger centuries like Vietnam I the east and Thailand to the west. Thus Cambodia has survived at the mercy of one or the other since the collapse of Angkor empire. So then does Cambodia want to be three faced ? The answer is no. Cambodia has been seeking for a true partner in the superpower to work with, however the unfortunate saga of the Cambodian tragic will always be thee awaiting.

In recent history, how could Cambodia not been able to avoid being sucked into the Vietnam war? How did pol pot rise to power? How did Hun sen get his power till now?

The story or history, should I say, should have been written extensively in china and Vietnam, what it has been as result in today Cambodia.

If Vietnam were so concern about the lives of their comrads like Hun sen, the Khmer Vietnam Minh group trained and supported by Vietnam, why did they leave them, at the mercy of the pol pot group, armed and supported by china?

If china were to serious abut relationship with pol pot, why just limited incursion to "teach" Vietnam a lesson in 1979?

Now while china has been circling looking for scraps and favour here and there, with handsome cash for Hun sen and his cronies; it is Vietnam who is calling all the shots in Cambodia, in every aspect. It is after all, within the span of nine years, Vietnamese blood spilled twice to liberate Cambodian. One to help pol pot and Hun sen liberate Cambodian from American puppet, Lon nol, and second was to liberate Cambodian from Chinese puppet pol pot.

And the cycle will continue, till there will be no more Cambodia to talk about. It is at the expense of other national interest and security.

by: Sovann from: Canada
August 22, 2013 10:01 PM
May god(s) or God( if any) help save Cambodia from these former Khmer Rouge/ khmer viet minh and the neo Chinese communist. Cambodia was a great country with rich in history, and resources, and smiling people, but she is slowly but surely destroyed bit and pieces by these Chinese and the communist from both china and Vietnam.
In Response

by: Ian from: USA
August 23, 2013 9:57 AM
"Wang told reporters China is interested in protecting Cambodia from "outside" interests."
What about Cambodia's self determination , Mr. Wang ?
wow ! what a statement! as if he thinks anyone would believe such a self-serving & faked altruistic proclamation .
In Response

by: matprum from: usa
August 23, 2013 7:41 AM
And Hun Sen and his idiotic regime are to stupid to take notice or blind by bribe. They are allowing his pupet master (China and Vietnam) to destroy the country bit by bit and steadily. Moutains are flatten to the ground, forest becomes a desolate place, sand is being suck out of the Mekong delta while causing landslide......Not to mention the exploitation of human righ so he can satisfy his so called allies (China and Vietnam). A bunch of idiots........

by: Wan from: Japan
August 22, 2013 5:16 PM
'Mao communism' is the opium of the Cambodian people even now. They will shortly suffer from worship-of-money and income-gaps just like Chinese. History repeats itself.
In Response

by: Chhunly from: Tacoma
August 25, 2013 10:22 PM
Come on Wan, if you understand the Cambodian politics and society better, you would not put it on the Cambodian people. We as people want to be free and desire nothing more than the right to self determination. Unfortunately, we had to live under the dictatorship of the Stupid leader like Hun Sen and his corrupt government. We don't want to be under the influence of such countries as China or Vietnam. We are so sick and tired of their influences.

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