Vietnam always wishes to work together with neighbouring countries to build common borders of peace, friendship, cooperation and development, said Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh.
Soldiers at the Vinh Xuong International Border Gate in An Giang province patrol a border route.
The wish is in line with Vietnam’s foreign policy of independence,self-reliance, peace, cooperation and development and serves the target ofmaintaining a peaceful and stable environment for national development, theofficial said in an article which was published following a conference in Hanoion October 5 to review land border demarcation and marker planting work of Vietnamand Cambodia during the 2006-2019 period.
A borderline clearly marked in the field and recognised in internationallyvalid legal documents will facilitate the management of and ensure nationaldefence and security in border areas, contributing to socio-economicdevelopment as well as exchanges, friendship and cooperation between neighbouringcountries, Minh noted.
The Deputy PM and FM highlighted the time-honoured relationship between Vietnamand Cambodia, saying apart from consolidating and enhancing the friendship andcooperation, the two sides have always affirmed their respect for independence,sovereignty, territorial integrity as well as legitimate rights of each other, notintervention in each other’s internal affairs, equality and mutual benefits.
Over the past 40 years, thanks to joint great and tireless efforts, issues leftover by history between the two sides, including those regarding border andterritory, have been addressed actively.
The border between Vietnam and Cambodia was formed since feudal time,but the delimitation stopped at the boundaries among regions. Under thecolonial regime, the border was adjusted by the Governor-General of Indochina.
After the French withdrew from Indochina in 1954, the entire border was drawnrelatively completely on the Bonne map 1/100,000 published by the Indochinesedepartment of geography.
Between 1954 and 1977, Vietnam and Cambodia held some negotiations on borderissues, which, however, produced no outcome. Following the birth of thePeople’s Republic of Kampuchea (PRK), the two countries signed the Treaty ofPeace, Friendship and Cooperation between the Socialist Republic of Vietnam(SRV) on February 18, 1979.
On the basis of the treaty, they negotiated and sealed the Treaty on thePrinciples for Border Issues Resolution between the SRV and the PRK on July 20,1983, and the Treaty on the Demarcation of National Boundaries between the SRVand the PRK on December 27, 1985.
In implementing the 1985 treaty, the two sides began to conduct boundarydemarcation and border marker planting in 1986, with 322 markers planned to beerected. However, the work was suspended in early 1989. In 1999, thenegotiation on land border was resumed and the two countries inked theSupplementary Treaty to the 1985 treaty between the SRV and the Kingdom ofCambodia, known in short as the 2005 Supplementary Treaty, on October 10, 2005.
Accordingly, they adjusted the border line in some areas and reached consensuson the implementation of border demarcation and marker planting along theentire route.
To materialise the 1985 treaty and 2005 supplementary treaty, in 2006, Vietnamand Cambodia resumed land border delimitation and marker planting. In 2013,they concurred to plant auxiliary markers and poles to further clarify theborder line in the field.
By now, the two sides have demarcated about 1,045km of the border line andbuilt 2,047 markers at 4,553 positions in the field, or around 84 percent ofthe workload along the entire border line.
The outcomes of the work have been detailed in the two state-levelinternational treaties signed by Vietnam and Cambodia in Hanoi on October 5,2019, which are the Supplementary Treaty tothe 1985 Treaty on the Delimitation of National Boundaries and theSupplementary Treaty to the 2005 treaty (known in short as the 2019Supplementary Treaty), and the protocol on land border demarcation and markerplanting.
Both sides expressed their resolve to complete the remaining 16 percent ofworkload, so that they can move forward to the demarcation of the border atsea.
Deputy PM and FM Minh described the signing of the 2019 supplementary treatyand the protocol as a major event in the bilateral relationship and a historicmilestone in the process of the settlement of land border issues betweenVietnam and Cambodia after more than 36 years of negotiations.
The event asserted the two sides’ shared goal of building a common border ofpeace, stability, friendship, cooperation and sustainable development, on thebasis of respect for independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity, andlegitimate interests of each other, equality and mutual benefits, thus contributingto continuously enhancing the sound neighbourliness and traditional solidarity,for interests and prosperity of their people.
The signing shows that the difficult issues of border and territory can besettled in accordance with international law if the concerned parties showtheir good will, determination, responsibility, trust and joint efforts, hestressed.
The shared achievement recorded by Vietnam and Cambodia has also contributed toconsolidating and strengthening solidarity within the Association of SoutheastAsian Nations (ASEAN), and improving the grouping’s prestige and position inthe international arena, Minh said.
After the two legal documents are ratified by authorized agencies of both Vietnamand Cambodia, and come into force, the two countries will manage their commonborder based on border demarcation and marker planting results acknowledged inthe protocol, while maintaining their current management over the remaining undelimitedsections in line with the 2005 supplementary treaty.
The official suggested the two sides soon build and sign an agreement toreplace the Agreement on Border Regulations inked in 1983, considering the newsituation, in order to ensure political security, and social order and safetyin border areas, thus creating favourable conditions for all-round exchangesbetween authorities and people of border areas in particular and the twocountries in general.
The Deputy PM and FM expressed the hope that the results will create majormomentum for the two sides to continue their negotiations in order to addressthe remaining 16 percent of the workload, towards building a completeVietnam-Cambodia border of peace, friendship, cooperation and development, inline with the motto of “good neighbourliness, traditional friendship, andcomprehensive, sustainable and long-term cooperation.”/. VNA