China and Cambodia deny U.S. report of Chinese military presence at joint port project

A new report from the Washington Post states that China is secretly building a PLA military base in a joint port project in Cambodia, claims which both nations’ officials have denied.

Cambodia and China again denied ​​that any Chinese military presence will be allowed at a naval facility in the Southeast Asian nation, after a Washington Post report published yesterday claimed that the project is set to be the site of a groundbreaking ceremony this week.

The Cambodian embassy in Washington stated that it “strongly disagrees” with the report’s “baseless accusation motivated to negatively frame Cambodia’s image.” It added that Cambodia “firmly adheres” to its constitution, which does not permit a foreign military presence on Cambodian soil.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhào Lìjiān 赵立坚 said on Tuesday that the “renovation” of the base is meant only to “strengthen the Cambodian naval capacities to protect its maritime integrity and combat maritime crimes.”

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