Kandal provincial governor Kong Sophoan has ordered local authorities to prohibit the construction of buildings in areas bordering Cambodia and to report any irregularities immediately.
Recently, Vietnamese officials removed another seven tents from the border area with Cambodia.
His remarks were made on Wednesday afternoon at a ceremony between Kandal Provincial Hall, Heng Development Co Ltd and Border Defence Team of Special Military Region 601 in Chheu Kmao commune’s Prek Hem village in Koh Thom district, according to the provincial hall’s Facebook page.
Sophoan also urged local authorities to continue protecting and strengthening the security of the border area to prevent illegal border crossings and smuggling of goods.
He said: [The authorities] shall prohibit the construction of buildings by Cambodian and Vietnamese parties on areas which have not yet been designated with border markers.
“There shall be preventive mechanisms and immediate reports in case there are any abnormalities to ensure immediate action. [The authorities] shall pay attention to the conversion of the border area into a peaceful and friendly area with good cooperation and development.”
Sophoan told The Post that after the order was issued, Vietnam removed seven tents which had been set up arbitrarily near the K’orm Somnor and Takeo provincial border.
There were 17 tents left in Kandal province, he said, and urged Vietnamese officials to remove them.
He said: “[the Vietnamese] have removed seven tents, leaving 17 left. These 24 tents were located in two areas – one at a border area which has obtained an agreement to insert border markers, and another area 6.5km away which does not yet have an agreement.”
In May, Vietnamese authorities sent military troops to set up about 114 camps and tents about 30m from the border.
The area, which is situated in Vietnam and two Cambodian provinces, Kandal and Takeo, has not been demarcated.
The director of the Institute of International Relations at the Royal Academy of Cambodia Kin Phea said as per the agreement between Cambodia and Vietnam, it is not permitted to construct or do anything that could affect the demarcated border without consent.
He said any action against this policy is an infringement of the agreement.
“For this border issue, Cambodia always respects and values her neighbouring countries and any applicable laws. However, some neighbouring countries do not respect what has been stipulated in the agreement or treaty which they have signed.
“The Vietnamese have to remove the tents without any further delay because this is a border area that has not been determined via any agreement,” he said.
Phea said it was noticed that in the past Cambodia permitted Vietnamese citizens to cross the border by requiring them to abide by Ministry of Health conditions.
“This is to prevent the spread of Covid-19. It was not a response to the tents. If [the Vietnamese] want to set up tents, they can set them up on their border,” he said.