At the meeting, the two sides informed each other of each country’s development. Gen. Lich emphasized the importance of the meeting, saying that it helps create a new driving force to develop the bilateral defense ties in an intensive manner, especially in the context that the two countries are entering an important development period.

The Vietnamese Defense Minister underscored that Vietnam has always fostered its cooperative ties with Cambodia in different fields, including national defense, in the spirit of “good neighbors, traditional friendship, comprehensive cooperation, long-term sustainability.”

Regarding the 2017 cooperation plan, the two sides agreed that they seriously and fully implemented it with specific and practical outcomes and meeting the set targets. They highlighted prominent activities in information dissemination, training, exercises, and cooperation between military regions and border guard forces.

Gen. Lich (R) and Gen. Tea Banh at the signing ceremony

In 2017, the two sides successfully organized a number of practical activities in celebration of the 50th anniversary of Vietnam-Cambodia diplomatic ties and the 2017 Vietnam-Cambodia Friendship Year, thus edifying the younger generations on the two countries’ time-honored ties.

They also cooperated in holding a literary and art contest on the Vietnam-Cambodia solidarity, which drew the participation of numerous individuals and units of the two militaries and organizing a journey to mark the 40 years of the national salvation path of Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen.

It is worth noting that the enhanced cooperation between military regions and border guards of the two nations has reaped practical results. They coordinated closely in managing and dealing with violations related to the shared borderline and border markers, maintaining political security and social order and safety in the border areas and creating conditions for local socio-economic development while improving cadre training quality.

About cooperation orientations for 2018 and subsequent years, along with effective implementation of cooperation protocol and plan, the two sides agreed to boost popularization and education on the friendship between the two peoples and militaries, enhance training cooperation and consider it a long-term important issue of strategic significance.

The two sides will continue to promote cooperation between their border guard forces with a focus on expanding provincial-level exchanges.

Gen. Lich said that Vietnam is willing to support Cambodia in training cadres in specialties that Cambodia is in need.

For his part, Gen. Tea Banh reiterated the Cambodian people’s gratitude to the Vietnamese military’s and people’s sacrifices to help them escape from Pol Pot’s genocidal regime in the past as well as support to the Cambodian Royal Armed Forces at present.

He stressed that the Cambodian people and Royal Armed Forces have always treasured the traditional, fine friendship with their Vietnamese counterparts, and will try their best to preserve, reinforce and promote the sound relations.

After the meeting, the two generals signed a cooperation plan between the Ministries of National Defense of Vietnam and Cambodia in 2018.

Reported by Thu Trang from Vientiane, Laos

Translated by Mai Huong