Prime Minister Hun Sen today refuted an alleged claim that Cambodia has signed a secret agreement with China to allow the latter’s armed forces to use a Cambodian naval base in Preah Sihanouk province.
Mr Hun Sen’s reaction came after The Wall Street Journal on Sunday published an article, saying the pact—signed this spring but not disclosed by either side—gives China exclusive rights to part of a Cambodian naval installation on the Gulf of Thailand, not far from a large airport now being constructed by a Chinese company.
In his statement in Fresh News today, Mr Hun Sen said that the allegation is unfounded.
“It is the worst distorted news aimed at us. No such a thing ever happens. Foreign military base will violate Cambodia’s constitution,” Mr Hun Sen said. “We’ve never discussed such an issue with Chinese leaders, so there is no need to say an agreement was reached.”
“It’s time to stop using distorted news about China’s military presence in Cambodia,” he said.
The Government’s Press and Quick Reaction Unit also issued a statement today, saying that it is fake news.
“Prime Minister Hun Sen categorically rejects the Fake News spread by The Wall Street Journal alleging that Cambodia has signed a secret agreement to grant China its military exclusive use of the Ream Naval Base near Sihanoukville,” the statement said. “Prime Minister Hun Sen considers this latest Fake News as the most ill intention against Cambodia.”