Cambodian Prime Minister: Cambodia is not Vietnam's puppet

China Military Online
Zhang Tao

BEIJING, August 30 (ChinaMil) -- Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen was abused by Vietnamese netizens on social network recently for supporting China's stance on the South China Sea.

Hun Sen replied on his Facebook account on August 26 that Cambodia has nothing to do with South China Sea. His country is not Vietnam's puppet and will not serve Vietnam's interests.

Reporter noticed that Hun Sen's reply received 11,000 "likes" by August 28. He has refuted Vietnamese netizens' accusation of the Cambodian government for its stance on the South China Sea issue three times this month.

A Vietnamese called " Nguyen Van Tai " left a message on Hun Sen's Facebook account on August 26 in Vietnamese, English and Khmer that " Society now no one nation country are brothers friends all. all are the enemy! if I was the leader, the country Vietnam Cambodia was my goal to liberate their regime, will not jump into the Chinese to manipulate them as now. also in the East Sea issue should never rely on the tiny country like Cambodia and Laos to do. Vietnam should direct confrontation with China as battles 1978-1979 ..."

This message drew Hun Sen's attention and he responded on August 26. He said " I truly admire you that you knew a few languages such as Khmer, Vietnamese and English. For sure, I’m not Vietnamese, so I can’t reply to you in Vietnamese language. I shall reply to you in Khmer and English language below. Absolutely right, if you realized that Cambodia and Lao should not involve with South China Sea as you’ve raised in your comment. It’s the sole decision of Vietnamese government to solve the issue of South China Sea. It’s your right to chose war or peace solution on this particular issue. Definitely , you should respect the country of Lao, especially Cambodia, because we’re not related in South China Sea issue.

Hun Sen continued " I hope the Vietnamese government will understand my response to this comment by educating their people not to bother me anymore. I’ve received many inappropriate and insulting comments by Vietnamese people targeting me and my Khmer people. I want to tell you to respect our country’s independence and sovereignty. Because Cambodia has equal right with other country including Vietnam. "

He added " I want to reaffirm with you that I am not a Vietnamese puppet serving the benefits of Vietnamese country, and I’m also not a Boss of Vietnam. I’m not asking Vietnam to serve Cambodian political interest either. The South China Sea conflict should resolve it peacefully by the Chinese and Vietnamese government. It’s better than solve it through war as you’ve mentioned in your comment on my Facebook."

It is learnt that after Hun Sen expressed his support to China's stance on the South China Sea issue, especially after Cambodia refused to include in the ASEAN foreign ministers' joint declaration the award from Hague on the South China Sea arbitration unilaterally initiated by the Philippines, Vietnamese netizens have been leaving messages on the social network page of the Cambodian government and its prime minister Hun Sen to express their dissatisfaction. Some even accused Cambodia of supporting China with insulting language.

The Vietnamese newspaper Báo Giáo dục và Thời đại (Education Times) said on August 28 that it was the third time that Hun Sen publicly responded to Vietnamese's comments that month. The first time was on August 1, when he responded to a netizen accusing him of "betraying Vietnam". Hun Sen replied "Vietnam is not my boss. How can I betray it? My loyalty only goes to the Khmer nation."

The second time was on August 24, when he reprimanded a female Vietnamese netizen who used vile words that Cambodia has never done anything that damages the relation among ASEAN members because of the South China Sea issue.

"If you or your country has a problem with China, please solve it peacefully yourself. Don't blame it on me or drag Cambodia into your internal problems." He questioned whether she was expressing her own views or was assigned by Vietnamese authorities to attack him.

Born in Cambodia's Kampong Cham Province as the son to a Chinese from Chaozhou, South China's Guangdong province, Hun Sen became the state leader in 1985. He is 64 years old but is very familiar with social network. He updates four to five posts on his Facebook page per day on average, mostly about his work and life and policies and rules of the Cambodian government.

Vietnamese netizens left messages on Hun Sen's latest photos on Facebook on August 28. A Facebook user commented "if you let China run wild, ASEAN will split soon." Another went on "you should pick a side. Do you follow China or Vietnam?"

Sun Xiaoying, a research fellow at the Guangxi Academy of Social Sciences, said in an interview on August 28 that the Vietnamese hold "colonialist views" about Hun Sen. In the education and publicity in Vietnam, it is the emancipator of Cambodia and Cambodian people should be grateful to it. But in the eyes of the Cambodians, Vietnam invaded their country in history and the Khmer nation has a "feud" with Vietnam. A call to fight against Vietnam easily strikes a chord.

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