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PM urged to build ‘Mekong Peace Park’

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Prime Minister Hun Sen during a virtual meeting with UPF director-general Yun Young-ho on Tuesday. SPM

PM urged to build ‘Mekong Peace Park’

Yun Yong-ho, director of the South Korea-based Universal Peace Federation (UPF), requested that Prime Minister Hun Sen construct a Mekong Peace Park in Cambodia to promote peace across the Mekong River region.

The request was made on January 11 during Hun Sen’s videoconference with Yun regarding the UPF World Summit, which will be held on February 12-13 in South Korea, according to Hun Sen’s Facebook post on January 11.

The UPF – an international and interreligious network of individuals and organisations, including representatives from religion, government, civil society and the private sector – was founded in 2005 by the late Rev Sun Myung Moon, who also founded South Korea’s Unification Church in 1954.

During the videoconference, Yun said Hun Sen has a vision for peace and that a Mekong Peace Park would help him pursue that vision.

The UPF director also invited Hun Sen to attend the World Summit on Peace for the Korean Peninsula organised by the UPF in South Korea on February 12-13.

“[Yun Yong-ho] on behalf of UPF co-founder [Hak Ja Han Moon, wife of the late Rev Moon] also invited [Hun Sen] to attend the programme on February 12-13 and he accepted,” said Hun Sen’s Facebook post.

Yun said the summit will be attended by representatives from 157 countries, including all of the countries that have embassies in both North Korea and South Korea. People from around the world will also be able to attend the event online or follow the coverage of the summit provided by roughly 3,500 global media outlets.

Hun Sen was also named as co-chair of the organising committee of the World Summit on Peace in the Korean Peninsula while former UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon is also expected to be in attendance at the summit.

During the videoconference, Hun Sen also shared his views on how to achieve peace on the Korean Peninsula, emphasising ASEAN’s concept of the Indo-Pacific, which is based on three principles.

Those principles are to support peace and development, never oppose any individual or group and to support ASEAN and multilateral diplomatic forums.

Yun also congratulated Hun Sen on his visit to Myanmar as the chairman of ASEAN, saying it advanced the cause of peace and lauding him for the “ceasefire” announced during his two-day trip there.

Yun also strongly supported the plans of the ASEAN chair’s special envoy to Myanmar to meet with all stakeholders and the provision of humanitarian assistance to the country.

UPF-Cambodia secretary-general Chamroeun Sophal told The Post on January 11 that Hun Sen’s participation in the summit is very important and would help enable Cambodia to play an important role in Indochina and Asia-Pacific region diplomacy.

Sophal said that ultimately the goal of these annual summits is the reunification of the Korean peninsula, an outcome long sought after by many Koreans including UPF founders Hak Ja Han Moon and her late husband.

“I really appreciate [Hun Sen’s] participation because he can bring his message of peace to the whole world. If the Korean Peninsula can be united as one, then I think world peace can also be achieved that is real and long-lasting,” he said.

Sophal said that if Hun Sen played a role in bringing about the peaceful reunification of the Korean peninsula, it would elevate him to the status of a world-historical figure of far greater impact than what is already attributed to him by his considerable accomplishments as the leader of Cambodia.

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