The U.S. has reaffirmed its commitment to support Cambodia’s chairmanship of ASEAN this year and to boost the bilateral relations between the two countries, said H.E. Chum Sounry, Spokesperson for the Cambodian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MFAIC).
In a meeting here yesterday with H.E. Prak Sokhonn, he continued, Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of MFAIC, visiting U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs H.E Daniel Kritenbrink said the objective of his first visit to Cambodia in his current position is to demonstrate the U.S. commitment to support Cambodia’s ASEAN chairmanship and to enhance the bilateral relations with Cambodia. He conveyed Secretary of State Tony Blinken’s reaffirmation of the U.S. support for the success of the ASEAN Chairmanship of Cambodia.
According to the spokesperson, both sides shared the satisfaction vis-à-vis the fruitful outcomes of the Special ASEAN-U.S. Summit that was co-chaired by President Joe Biden and Samdech Techo Prime Minister Hun Sen in his capacity as the ASEAN Chair this year in Washington, D.C. last May.
They discussed the enhancement of bilateral cooperation on various fields, in which H.E. Prak Sokhonn expressed satisfaction with the steady growth in the bilateral trade and reiterated his call for the renewal of U.S. GSP for the benefit of the economic relationship. He also appreciated the U.S. humanitarian assistance extended to Cambodia, including more than 3 million doses of Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccines provided through COVAX as well as the development assistance granted to the country on education, health, agriculture, climate change, demining, among others. The Cambodian Deputy PM expressed his disappointment with Cambodia being unfairly considered an “un-cooperative” country with regard to the repatriation cooperation, leading to the imposing of visa restrictions on senior officials of the MFAIC.
In the ASEAN framework, Deputy PM Prak Sokhonn and Assistant Secretary Daniel Kritenbrink shared the commitment to further deepen the ASEAN-U.S. Dialogue Relations. Deputy PM Prak Sokhonn renewed Cambodia’s support for the elevation of ASEAN-U.S. Dialogue Relations to Comprehensive Strategic Partnership (CSP). Assistant Secretary Daniel Kritenbrink thanked Cambodia for this support and underlined the importance of having the CSP announced during the upcoming ASEAN-U.S. Summit in Cambodia.
The two sides had an exchange of views and discussion on the preparation for and the challenges facing at the upcoming 55th AMM and Related Meetings as well as the visit by Secretary of State Antony Blinken to attend the ASEAN PMC + U.S., the 12th East Asia Summit (EAS) Foreign Ministers' Meeting, and the 29th ASEAN Regional Forum.
The Deputy PM briefed the Assistant Secretary on the development in Myanmar, underlining Cambodia’s endeavours as Chair of ASEAN this year to implement the ASEAN Leaders’ Five Point Consensus (5PC) and some concrete outcomes achieved so far in this purpose. He also touched on his second visit to Myanmar in his capacity as Special Envoy of the ASEAN Chair from June 30-July 2, 2022, emphasising the progress registered by it, particularly his meetings with 7 Ethnic Armed Organisations (EAOs) and 7 political parties that won seats in the 2020 election. Assistant Secretary Daniel Kritenbrink appreciated the efforts of Samdech Techo Prime Minister Hun Sen and of the Deputy PM himself in helping Myanmar to return to peace, stability and normalcy.
Deputy PM Prak Sokhonn and Assistant Secretary Daniel Kritenbrink had also an exchange of views and discussion on some other regional and international issues of common concerns and interests.
Source: Agency Kampuchea Press