Vietnamese Defense Minister Meets Government Leaders

Vietnam’s new defense minister met with Prime Minister Hun Sen and National Assembly President Heng Samrin on Tuesday, assuring them that military cooperation between the two countries would remain strong in the face of efforts to break them apart.

Ngo Xuan Lich had afternoon meetings with Mr. Samrin at the National Assembly and Mr. Hun Sen at his office building in Phnom Penh.

National Assembly President Heng Samrin, right, shakes hands with Vietnamese Defense Minister Ngo Xuan Lich on Tuesday at the Assembly building in Phnom Penh. (Siv Channa/The Cambodia Daily)
National Assembly President Heng Samrin, right, shakes hands with Vietnamese Defense Minister Ngo Xuan Lich on Tuesday at the Assembly building in Phnom Penh. (Siv Channa/The Cambodia Daily)

“He said that currently some unfriendly people are trying to split the relationship, ties and solidarity between Vietnam and Cambodia, but Vietnam will continue in solidarity as has been the tradition forever,” Keo Piseth, Mr. Samrin’s Cabinet chief, told reporters of General Xuan Lich’s remarks.

The defense minister expressed similar sentiments in his meeting with Mr. Hun Sen, according to Eang Sophalleth, an assistant to the prime minister.

The ruling party’s ties to Hanoi have long been a major point of criticism for the political opposition.

However, the CPP in recent years has ramped up relations with China.

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