T he Royal Government is on the verge of re-establishing diplomatic relations
with military- run Burma, which have been severed since the '60s, Foreign
Minister Norodom Sirivudh said upon his return from a four-day working visit to
Laos last week.
The minister said he had talks with the Burmese diplomats
in Vientiane but did not elaborate on the meeting.
However Sirivudh did
say: "I think it's good that now we begin to meet our Burmese friends and I
think our two governments have an intention to make an announcement about the
re-establishment of diplomatic relations."
Vientiane might be asked to
act as a bridge for further contact between Cambodian and Burmese officials,
according to the minister.
The purpose of the visit was also to
strengthen neighborhood ties and economic co-operation with Laos, in particular
co-operation on construction of a road linking the two countries, Sirivudh
He added that Cambodia and Laos were to submit the road project for
consideration of Asian Development Bank (ADB).
"We'd like to promote
access from Vientiane, Stoeng Treng to Route 13 and access to the sea for our
"Cambodia is also interested in getting access to China
through Laos and we'd like to see what's going on in Burma," said the foreign
Both countries, he said, expressed identical views on issue of
the Mekong River Committee, saying that countries which the river runs through
should not be divided by geography into northern and southern groups.
think that we should not be victims and if up north they make any project
without consulting with us (Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam) the river will be
affected and we can face serious problem," the minister said.
logging and illegal border crossing were also part of the agenda of the visit.
Khmer Rouge commander Ta Mok was reportedly to have fled to the junction
of the Cambodian-Thai-Laos border as the government advanced on his headquarters
at Anlong Veng.
Sirivuddh said he had private talks on the KR issue with
his Laotian counterparts, however, he refused to go into detail.
talked about the border in general. Nobody will illegally cross the border with
weapons," he said.