Cambodian Border Committee Dismisses Allegations of Vietnamese Encroachment

Cambodian Border Committee Dismisses Allegations of Vietnamese Encroachment
Cambodia's Border Affairs Committee chairman Var Kimhong (R) inspects posts along the Vietnamese border in 2022. (photo: Khmer Times)

The Border Affairs Committee of Cambodia refuted claims of encroachment by Vietnam on the Cambodian border, adding that such allegations were baseless and were intended to spread false information.

The Border Affairs Committee of Cambodia has dismissed allegations made by a media outlet regarding Vietnam’s encroachment on Cambodian land at the border between both countries. The committee responsible for border affairs has called for legal action against those spreading such rumors.

The committee’s statement came in response to a recent report by an opposition-aligned media outlet, SUNTV, which claimed that Vietnam had pushed its border posts into Cambodian territory.

In addition, the outlet questioned the potential impact of the alleged encroachment on the ethnic population of the region.

Accompanied by a six-minute video clip, the report featured two monks visiting the border area and alleging that Cambodia had lost a significant amount of land to Vietnam in the Ponhea Krek district of Tboung Khmum province.

The report claimed that a pagoda, which had initially been situated in the middle of the forest on the border, was relocated deeper into Cambodian territory due to Vietnamese encroachment.

The Border Affairs Committee asserted last Friday that SUNTV’s report was fabricated and aimed to disseminate false information, particularly during the build-up to the National Election. The committee emphasized that the claims leveled against the Cambodian Government were unfounded.

To clarify the situation, the committee highlighted that Cambodia had accurately surveyed an area of 181,035 square kilometers for border demarcation with Vietnam and other neighboring countries, as specified in the Constitution.

It urged Cambodian citizens both inside and outside the country not to believe or propagate false information to attack the Cambodian government, as such actions could result in legal consequences.

Ponhea Krek district governor, Ly Sophealin, echoed the committee’s stance, affirming that no land had been ceded to Vietnam in the area.

He dismissed the allegations as untrue, adding that the villagers would be the first to raise concerns if any land had been relinquished. Sophealin also refuted the claim that the border was being moved closer to the pagoda, asserting that 42 kilometers of borderland had already been demarcated and marked with border posts.

“In the Ponhea Krek district, 42 kilometers of borderland has been demarcated and border posts have been erected, so you can come and see the border posts,” Sophealin said.