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Border relations a win-win pact

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Cambodia's Minister of Interior Sar Kheng met Lao’s Minister of Public Security Vilay Lakhamfong last week. Ministry of Interior

Border relations a win-win pact

Cambodia's Minister of Interior Sar Kheng and Lao’s Minister of Public Security Vilay Lakhamfong signed the minutes of cooperation for 2020 in Laos and agreed to continue to work together on border issues including taking action to crack down on drug trafficking and illegal crossings.

A press release from the Ministry of Interior said the minutes were inked after Minister Sar Kheng made a three-day visit to Vientiane from March 4.

The press release said the two ministries appreciated the successes achieved last year, which were due to the effective implementation of the notes from the previous meeting.

These included the reciprocal visits of bordering provincial authority delegates, entity delegation, human resource training and crime crackdown cooperation along the borders, especially regarding drug-related offenses.

“Both sides noted and appreciated the close cooperation between the provincial authorities and the competent forces of the bordering provinces between the two countries in maintaining a peaceful environment.

“This communality contributes to favourable conditions for the social development of the nation and mutually benefits improved livelihoods for the people of Laos and Cambodia,” it said.

The Ministry of Interior also noted that the two sides signed the minutes of cooperation for 2020, which cemented further action on a number of important tasks.

These included urging provincial authorities to ease cross-border access for citizens and allow mutual trade to serve the needs of people living in the border areas.

It said finding a solution for the issues in a timely, peaceful and understanding manner was a priority to ensure continued development in the area.

It said, “Both sides will also continue to cooperate in taking firm measures to prevent and curb drug-related crimes, especially in border crossing cases.

“We will continue to exchange information and experiences on drug offenses in order to establish drug-free villages and schools along the border.”

The ministry said the two sides will also continue to push for stricter measures to prevent and suppress illegal border crossings as well as improving borderline management.

It added that it will continue to address the principles of mutual independence, sovereignty and respect.

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