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Jakarta Post

A Chinese naval base in Cambodia?

  • Husain Haider

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PREMIUM
Phnom Penh   /   Fri, December 14, 2018   /  03:18 pm
A Chinese naval base in Cambodia? A Cambodian woman reads the launch copy of English-language newspaper The Phnom Penh Post in Phnom Penh. (AFP/Tang Chhin Sothy)

Speculation that Cambodia had ceded military control of a port in Koh Kong province reached fever pitch in the weeks following Prime Minister Hun Sen’s attendance of the ASEAN summit in Singapore.

The news left many wondering whether there were nefarious voices turning a non-issue into a global security concern. Asia Times started the ball rolling on Nov. 15 (the last day of the summit) with an article entitled “Cambodia at the center of a new cold war”.

It relied on an unnamed source and a study funded by the Center for Advanced Defense Studies to assert that China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Navy would set up a naval base on Cambodian soil with the aim to assert its dominance over the South China Sea.

“Much of the suspicion and paranoia stemmed from the fact that deepwater ports have enough depth to s...

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.