Visitor No since 22-10-98
Return of Kampuchea Print E-mail
Tuesday, 17 December 1985
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Return of Kampuchea
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The Cub, QMC, London

Dear Editor,

The picture that your foreign affairs correspondent tried to paint in the Nov 26th issue of Cub about Kampuchea was one-sided. It seems to suggest that he actually advocates the continued presence of the Vietnamese troops in Kampuchea. The fact is that Kampuchea was invaded by Vietnamese troops and her sovereignty usurped. Vietnam has no right to do so. Indeed no country has ever a right to interfere in the internal affairs of another, let alone sending 200,000 soldiers to devour a defenceless, poor and small country and installing a puppet regime there. Presently, it is estimated that there are 160,000 to 180,000 Vietnamese troops in Kampuchea with eight divisions (about 80,000) at the border.

The moment you support such a foreign and military intervention in a sovereign and independent country, you are near to a third world war. The Vietnamese intervention is akin to the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan. The fact that there is a deluge of Kampuchean refugees into the neighbouring country, Thailand and the increase in votes at the recent UN General Assembly for the retention of the UN seat held by the Democratic Kampuchean tripartite resistance coalition of ANS (Armee Nationale Sihanoukiste), KPNLF (Khemr People's National Liberation Front) and Khemer Rouge undoubtedly evidences both international and domestic disapproval of the Vietnamese-backed regime of Heng Samrin.

In Kampuchea today, the war is still on as a result of the presence of Vietnamese troops and how can there be any economic development when there is no peace but war in a country? Vietnam must therefore first withdraw all her armed forces from Kampuchea to pave way for free, independent and democratic elections. Vietnam cannot deprive the people of Kampuchea of self-determination and self-destiny. The elections can be supervised by the UN with perhaps observers from the USA, USSR, India as leader of the Non-aligned nations and ASEAN members (Negara Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia, The Phillipines, Singapore and Thailand).

If such fair and democratic elections can be held whereby ANS, KPNLF, KHMER ROUGE and HENG SMARIN can all take part then clealry the people would not re-instate the former Pol Pot regime and even if they do, it is only democractic! However, as long as the Heng Samrin government is under the aegis of the Vietnamese government, there can be no peace and stability in Kampuchea and the whole region of South East Asia.

Vietnam's intransigent attitude towards international pressure in the world forum and her belligerent behaviour should be condemned by all peace-loving people of the world. Countries like Vietnam can never be allowed to redraw the map of the world and democracy must prevail as the oft-repeated saying goes, democracy is both the best and the most difficult form of organisation in a government; the best because it is the most difficult!

QMC Students should therefore also be allowed to see this side of the picture which your foreign affairs correspondent has failed to show in his original picture of the Kampuchean situation.

Roger Tan

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