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PM Hun Sen Discusses Joint Relations with Foreign Minister of Japan

PHNOM PENH: The Foreign Minister of Japan, Hayashi Yoshimasa, paid a courtesy call to Prime Minister Hun Sen on Saturday morning, 6 August, at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh. This meeting took place prior to a signing ceremony between the Japanese Foreign Minister and Cambodian Foreign Minister, DPM Prak Sokhonn, on a concessional loan of almost US $400 million from Japan, for the development of the Sihanoukville Autonomous Port.

During the meeting, Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa pledged to further boost bilateral ties and cooperation between Cambodia and Japan, including in the field of national defense. 

The Prime Minister’s assistant, Eang Sophalleth, gave a short press briefing after the meeting, where he said that Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa expressed his support for Cambodia's ASEAN Chairmanship, especially following the successful conclusion of the ASEAN Ministerial Meeting and related meetings held in Phnom Penh over the past week. 

He also mentioned Japan's support for Cambodia's ASEAN leadership in resolving the ongoing crisis in Myanmar.

Regarding bilateral relations, the Japanese Foreign Minister stated that he would encourage more Japanese investors to come to Cambodia, along with increasing cooperation in the fields of economy, national defense and more.

Assistant Eang Sophalleth said during his press briefing, “In this regard, [Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa] said that he will continue to work with DPM Prak Sokhonn to further promote this relationship with international cooperation, especially in the economic sector, by encouraging more investors to come to Cambodia, and in the national defense sector, as well as other sectors."

Prime Minister Hun Sen, in turn, expressed his deep condolences over the death of former Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, adding that he considered his passing to be like the loss of one of his brothers.

The Prime Minister agreed with the Japanese foreign minister’s assessment of the relationship between Cambodia and Japan. He thanked the people of Japan for providing a concessional loan to help build the port of Sihanoukville, as well as for providing Covid-19 vaccine assistance to Cambodia.

Prime Minister Hun Sen also gave comment on the Ukraine war during the meeting, saying that this war of aggression is a complex issue and it is important that the sanctions placed on Russia do not lead to another crisis in the world.

On the subject of Myanmar, the Prime Minister told the Japanese Foreign Minister that Cambodia, as the ASEAN chair, still wants Myanmar to return to democracy. In its ASEAN Chairmanship, Cambodia is committed to contributing to the reduction of violence in Myanmar, promoting mechanisms to provide assistance to the vulnerable, and supporting negotiations between all parties.

The Cambodian Prime Minister also expressed regret that the Myanmar military government executed four opposition activists in the middle of this month. 


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