mercredi, novembre 28, 2007

Half of 2.4 Million Vietnamese Get IDs in Cambodia

News from Cambodia

Half of 2.4 Million Vietnamese Immigrants Said Given IDs by Cambodian Authority
Phnom Penh Moneakseka Khmer in Cambodian
16 November 2007 [Report by Koet Samrech]

The commission for the census and registration of aliens living in Cambodia headed by Interior Ministry State Secretary Em Sam-an has started the census and registration of the aliens living in Cambodia since October 2006. So far more than a year has already elapsed but the commission has yet to show the result of the aliens' census and registration. Not just that, Interior Minister Sar Kheng seemed somewhat unwilling to show the number of aliens living in Cambodia, either legally and illegally.

A high-ranked Interior Ministry official who spoke on condition of anonymity said that the Interior Ministry might show the figures of the aliens living in Cambodia after the fourth national election to be held on 27 July 2008. The reason is that if these figures are revealed now the Cambodian People's Party [CPP] could be at a disadvantage because most of the aliens living in Cambodia are Vietnamese nationals who have illegally entered Cambodia and are supporters of the CPP. Besides, the majority of these Vietnamese immigrants have already voted for the CPP on several occasions so that they can live and work on Cambodian soil peacefully.

This high-ranked Interior Ministry official disclosed that the commission for the census and registration of aliens headed by Em Sam-an has conducted the census and registration of aliens in a number of provinces/cities where many aliens live. The work of this commission has led to the finding that the overwhelming majority of aliens living in Cambodia are Vietnamese immigrants. For this reason, the commission is afraid to publicly announce the result of the census. If the Interior Ministry dares to publicize the result of the census and registration of the aliens soon, various political parties and observers might question the political principles of the CPP in protecting the Vietnamese immigrants.

It should be noted that in May and June 2006 a Vietnamese magazine published that there were 300,000 Vietnamese nationals living in Cambodia. In making this announcement maybe this magazine wanted to point out that the Vietnamese immigrants can come and live in Cambodia freely. But almost immediately, the spokesman of the Interior Ministry claimed that there were only about 100,000 Vietnamese immigrants living in this country. The Interior Ministry spokesman's claim came under strong criticisms of many circles, which said that this was an intention to cover up the number of Vietnamese living in Cambodia because these Vietnamese have voted for the CPP.

A few months ago the Vietnamese association in Cambodia affirmed that a little more than 100,000 Vietnamese nationals lived in Cambodia and half of them had documents recognized by the Cambodian authority. Such a claim made by the Vietnamese association drew criticisms from a number of observers who said that the Cambodian authority cares more about the Vietnamese immigrants than about its own citizens. As a matter of fact, 50 percent of the Vietnamese immigrants living in Cambodia have documents recognized by the Cambodian authority while a large number of Cambodians have not yet been recognized by the Cambodian authority. Independent observers said that there are from 2 to 4 million Vietnamese immigrants in Cambodian these days, not just 300,000 as published by the Vietnamese magazine or just 100,000 as claimed by the Interior Ministry spokesman and the chairman of the Vietnamese association. To really know if it is true that millions of Vietnamese are living in Cambodia one needs to go look at the Chba Ampeou area in Meanchey district, Phnom Penh, and the Chhnok Tru area of Kampong Chhnang province. There, one is certain to be able to evaluate the real number of Vietnamese in Cambodia. This is because in both places the Vietnamese immigrants are living like colonies of ants and most of them carry papers recognized by the Cambodian authority.

The independent observers further said that at present more Vietnamese are continuing to pour into Cambodia in an anarchic mass through the border gates adjacent to Vietnam, especially through the Bavet border pass. These Vietnamese immigrants come in and take shelter under the label of the big Vietnamese association in Phnom Penh and its chapters in 19 Cambodian provinces and cities. The authorities at the border do not care about the future impact to the national society. They care only about lining their own pockets with bribes.

Some political figures have expressed great worry to see the influx of Vietnamese immigrants into Cambodia that looks like the current from a broken dam. The children of some Vietnamese immigrants are learning the Cambodian language and literature and are better read than most Cambodian children, the owners of the country. They are seeking to learn and understand the Cambodian culture, tradition, and mores in depth. Therefore, in the future, these Vietnamese kids will become Cambodian officials, civil servants, members of Parliament, and maybe senior government leaders.

These political figures noted that the fact that the Vietnamese association has opened courses to teach the Cambodian language and literature to its people who are living on Cambodian soil shows that the Vietnamese are having a specific scheme afoot. Our saying this should not be taken as racial discrimination or an attempt at breaking up the longstanding Cambodian-Vietnamese friendship. It is just an expression of concern, for the presence of millions of Vietnamese immigrants in Cambodia is not something good.

Recently the Cambodian Government headed by the megalomaniac Prime Minister Hun Sen was seriously thinking about resolving the border problem with Vietnam to the point that it set a timeframe for the implantation of the border markers between the two countries to be completed by the end of 2008. As for the settlement of the immigration issue that is so vital to the survival of Cambodia, Hun Sen does not care to resolve it anytime soon.

$1.8 Billion Highway linking Vietnam-Cambodia


US Cos To Build $1.8 Billion Highway Linking Vietnam Cambodia

By admin on Nov 7, 2007
in Cambodia Economy

HANOI - (Dow Jones)- Vietnamese and Cambodian authorities are working to allow U.S companies to build a $1.8-billion highway linking the two cities of Can Tho and Phnom Penh over the next two years, a local government official said Tuesday.

Vietnam’s First Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Sinh Hung has given the approval for authorities to work on the 110-kilometer highway linking Vietnam’s Can Tho with the historic city of Phnom Penh, Le Tan Hoc, director of Can Tho city’s transport department, said.

Global Ventures and KG America will bid to build under a build-operate- transfer model, the official told Dow Jones Newswires.

Under the model, investors build infrastructure, run it for a given period of time and then hand it over to the government.

Hoc said the highway is expected to have six lanes with a total width of 35 meters.

“Vietnam and Cambodia support this project, which will help boost trade in the region,” Hoc said.

China - USA

Window of China

China, U.S. agree on opening military hot line
2007-11-05 13:01:40

Chinese Defense Minister Cao Gangchuan (R) and visiting U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates (L) shake hands during a press conference in Beijing, capital of China, Nov. 5, 2007.(Xinhua Photo)

BEIJING, Nov. 5 (Xinhua) -- China and the United States agreed on Monday to open a direct telephone line between the defense ministries of the two countries.

Chinese Defense Minister Cao Gangchuan and visiting U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates made the announcement at a joint press briefing after holding talks in Beijing on Monday morning.

The Sino-U.S. military hot line is the first of its kind that China has established with another country at the defense ministry level.

Discussions on setting up the military hot line have been ongoing since Chinese President Hu Jintao and U.S. President George W. Bush agreed to advance bilateral military relations during their meeting in April 2006.

The creation of the military hot line will help enhance mutual trust between the militaries and promote the development of military-to-military relations between China and the United States, said Tao Wenzhao, a Chinese Academy of Social Sciences researcher.

Besides the hot line, the two ministers also agreed to continue to strengthen dialogue and exchange at various levels and cultural exchanges. These will include exchanges between military academies and young officers and holding exercises on humanitarian aid and disaster relief.

The defense ministries of the two countries will also launch military archives cooperation so as to help find U.S. military personnel missing in action in China before and after the Korean War.

"The military-to-military relations between China and the United States has grown in recent years. China is willing to join hands with the United States, properly handle disputes and friction, and make a sound and stable development of the military relations," Cao said during the talks.

Gates said the two armed forces have maintained an active momentum in the development of military relations and were facing an important opportunity to expand exchanges in various fields.

On bilateral relations, Cao said the Sino-U.S. relations are facing important opportunities for further development as well as some challenges. The two countries should make joint efforts to properly deal with the challenges, and promote a sound and stable development of bilateral relations.

Gates said the United States and China, as two countries with major influence, have done effective work on international and regional issues, and have made positive contributions to maintaining regional and world peace and stability.

The aim of the visit is to deepen dialogues and expand consensus between the two countries, and to boost common interest of the two countries, he said.

China delivers marine equipments to Cambodia

News From Cambodia

Chinese ship-building company delivers marine equipments to Cambodia 2007-11-07 18:57:52
SIHANOUKVILLE, Cambodia, Nov. 7

(Xinhua) -- The China State Ship-building Corporation (CSSC) here on Wednesday delivered a batch of marine equipments to the Royal Armed Forces of Cambodia (RAFC) to help its navy branch counter crimes like smuggling and drug trafficking.

The handover ceremony was held at the Ream Navy Headquarters in Sihanoukville, the port city in southwest Cambodia near the Gulf of Thailand.

"The high-quality equipments will play an important role in improving the Cambodian navy forces' working efficiency and safeguard the security and integrity of the kingdom's territorial waters," said Cambodia's Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Tea Banh.

Cambodia's navy commander Ong San Kan said that the equipments were delivered on time and will beef up the navy forces' capability to safeguard the country's territorial waters.

"It can enable us to fight drug trafficking, illegal immigration, piracy and terrorism more efficiently," he added.

The equipments, including four 46-meter-long patrol boats, three 20-meter-long patrol boats, one landing ship and one 60-meter-long floating dock, arrived here on Sunday.

Lu Xiaoyan, vice president of the CSSC, said that the vessel construction project was completed after four years' cooperation between the two sides and is expected to become the new blood to help maintain Cambodia's national security.

"We hope that today's delivery will bring us more opportunities to carry out further cooperation with Cambodia in equipment production and maintenance, personnel training as well as spare parts supply," she added.

Zhang Jinfeng, Chinese Ambassador to Cambodia, said that the ship production by the CSSC for Cambodia was initiated in 2004 with preferential loan from the Chinese government and embodied the traditional friendship and deep feeling between the two countries and peoples.

"China will keep on developing its good neighborly ties with Cambodia and help the kingdom gain power for independent development," she added.

The local Cambodian Daily reported on Oct. 27 that the new vessels, worth 60 million U.S. dollars in total, will be deployed along the Thailand Gulf to protect Cambodia's offshore assets.

The Thailand Gulf is situated to the southwest of Cambodia, where the kingdom has a huge interest of marine products and a profitable prediction of oil and natural gas reserves. Editor: An Lu

Posted by Khemara Jati
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News of Cambodia N° 0741-E


Khemara Jati
Montreal, Quebec
November 4th, 2007

For some time, the most important fact is that all the Cambodians, more particularly those living abroad, realizes the mortal danger of the Nation due to the military, human and, economic invasion of the Vietnamese. The crucial problem for the future of our Motherland lies in the possibility for Cambodia to become a vietnamese province. Some Cambodians predict that it will be done even in around ten coming years and maybe before.

As solution?

Some try to know what is saying in « Put Tom Neay », as for the westerner Nostradamus in some difficult times. For some others, they seek for “Preah Bath Thormeuk”, that is a “Superman” or an extraterrestrial to save Cambodia. All this because they do not believe any more in the promises never held by major powers. And also because they do not trust in the capacities of our people to take up this mortal (death) challenge. In Cambodia, our fellow countrymen know since from January 1979, that the objective of Hanoi is to transform Cambodia to another Kampuchea Krom. They distrust totally sweet words made by Hanoi, then after the signature of the Paris Agreements of October 23rd, 1991, promises never held by major powers and by the UNO.

It is necessary to remember some enthusiasm of the Cambodians abroad, in particular in France at the time when these famous Paris Agreements is signing. Cambodians fought for places (seat) to be shown in the banquet offered by Sihanouk, Son Sann, Khieu Samphan and Hun Sen. The same scenario happened in New York. Then the show setting by the French President Mitterrand executed by his Minister of the Foreign Affairs Roland Dumas while Sihanouk returned back to Phnom Penh in the Hanoi's cage carried out by its lackey Hun Sen. It is necessary to know the chronology of what takes place after this return which we shall diffuse some time, soon. Cambodian people knew perfectly that the Vietnamese troop’s withdrawal was only a farce accepted by major powers. Phnom Penh was tiredly controlled and strongly covered by the vietnamese police Dacon and the vietnamese servicemen disguised as civilian. The international community living in Phnom Penh closed eyes and ears. To show that they are not dupes of this sideshow setting up with big spectacle, the Cambodian people of Phnom Penh organize the big demonstrations, begun on December 17th, 1991 against the regime set up by the Vietnamese since 1979. This demonstration ends by the bloody massacre of December 23rd 1991, executed by the Vietnamese police who fired at point-blank range at the crowd, under the eyes and camera of the diplomats and western media. From Cambodian source, there would be hundreds of deaths. Since then no inquiry was ever made. Why this massacre in this date? It is necessarily that these demonstrations end up before December 25th, the thirteenth anniversary of the Vietnamese troops invasion in Cambodia.

Following this massacre, the UN was obliged to appoint hastily, on January 9th 1992, the Japanese Yasushi Akashi to form and steer UNTAC. Japan was obliged to pay out 3 billions of US dollars for this operation. Akashi applied the directives of Tokyo to defend the interests of Japan in Cambodia.

Other Cambodians abroad, wonder how the Jews were able to keep their cultural identities since more two thousand years, in spite of the multiple pogroms and massacre? The last one in date has just taken place during the last and second World War. To understand how the Jewish people are deeply cancel in the terrible undergone events, it would be necessary to read Simone Veil's book; « My Life », Ed. Stock, which has just publish in France. By reading of this book allows us to compare the industrial method of the massacres in concentration camp of Auschwitz, in Poland, with the medieval manner of Tuol Sleng, in Cambodia. Nazi Germany is a highly industrial society. Cambodia of the Khmer Rouge is a society of illiterate farmers. Auschwitz and Tuol Sleng illustrates perfectly these two social structures. Germany is now the third economic power of the world, Cambodia among the poorest. Germany: 0 % of illiterates, Cambodia 50 % of illiterates and 0 % of industry using the Cambodian grey cells. We wish that our fellow countrymen who have possibilities, go to visit Auschwitz and read Simone Veil's book.

Some Cambodians wonder: « why the Jews are so résilients? ». To answer this question:

1/. It is necessary to know that there is no single illiterate Jew in the world. The very young 15-year-old Jew must know how to comment the Torah, the sacred text of the Jews, in the Synagogue, in front of rabbis, in Hebrew. Also the women and the Jewish girls are oblige to know the Hebrew to be able to educate it to the sons and boys. Now in certain Jewish communities, the 15-year-old girls also must be able to do it as the boys of the same age. It is what explains that of any time, there are scholars and learned Jews, like Newton and Einstein, among the most known. Nowadays there are also numerous Jews among the best scholars, the artists, the musicians and the other intellectuals of the world. There is no Jewish worker in factories, as we were able to notice the number of Cambodian workers. We recommend reading the book “1492” of Jacques Attali, now available in small format. This book is also the history summarizing of how Europe is taken up in power from the moment when the printing office is invented in 1450. Attali summarizes this history at the beginning of his book as follow:

« Europe is this giant: trained by multiple scholars when the Roman Empire of the West gets rid, she slumbers during almost a millennium. Then at a moment of fate and necessity, she pushes aside those who are surround her and dashes in the universe's conquest, massacring the peoples of all around, appropriating their wealth, stealing their names, their past, their history. »
Jaques Attali, in « 1492 », Ed. Fayard, Paris 1991, page 9.

Can Cambodia's history be written without taking into account interventions of the Europeans in Southeast Asia and in East Asia from the Portuguese’s arrival at Malacca in 1511? Of nowadays can we understand or exclude what is taking place in Cambodia without taking into account conflicts of the geostrategic interests of major powers?

2/. After Hitler's defeat the surviving Jews got back their real estates and almost all the personal properties. They are honored and helped by their native countries. The young Jew people were able to begin or to benefit their studies with scholarships while families are deprived. Some even obtained Nobel prizes.

3/. The Jews people show strong solidarity between them. Many in the United States are very rich and help their families in Europe and also societies of helps. Nowadays the Jews in the world send billions of US dollars to the Israel government. It is very rare practically none Jew attacks another Jew in politics.

4/. The Jews are deeply attached to their history. Nowadays many Jews make researches trying to confirm or to counter certain passages of their written history, by archaeological proofs. These researches are often financed by the State of Israel and the rich Jews.

5/. The Jews have owed great respect for their deaths. For example, in « 1492 », they are chased away by Spain in abominable conditions considered nowadays, to read the book of J. Attali « 1492 ». They abandoned everything, in particular their real estates. But before leaving, they asked the Spanish authorities to protect and maintain their cemeteries. During the Second World War, the Spanish power of Franco had not participated in Jews' extermination in Europe. On the other hand, for four centuries, the Spanish cities are expanding and the Jewish cemeteries are in the middle of almost in the center of cities in the XXth century. In sign of gratitude, the Jews accepted that their cemeteries are moved. So the Spanish authorities held their promise during four centuries. The Jews have never accepted that Jewish bones are exposed to tourists.

We wish that our fellow countrymen study and meditate seriously on the Jew’s history then try to find means to unite and gather us together in order to fight against the vietnamese domination.

All the experiences of the world show that the history and the culture are the fundamental bases of the Unity of a Nation. Their perpetuity lies in their written support. Any culture based on the oral way is condemned to disappear. The experience in Africa, where the peoples are obliged to learn another language than that of their ancestors, is not it there to illustrate the fact ? In Latin America, some countries are setting back to honor the languages of their ancestors. They invent or adapt new words to be able to teach them in universities. It is the only solution to be able to teach, read and write, in one word, it is the best way to quickly learn to the whole people and make her known the knowledge of the contemporary world. It is the only solution allowing the farmers and the intellectuals to speak and write in the same language. It is important that the abstract languages in sciences, techniques, philosophy etc., become common use in city as well as in the village. Why do not try to understand France fighting with force for the world French-speaking (francophonie) ? Because the defense of the French language crosses by publishing the knowledge and books in French then distributing all over the world. Cambodia is the only country of our region that her national language is neglected. Why? The Cambodians in the eastern area of the country are learning the vietnamese language and on the Western the thai language. The languages of our neighbors are richer in vocabulary than ours ? So the invasion of our neighbors begins with the linguistic invasion. Are we capable of understanding it in time?

Some of our fellow countrymen, especially those living abroad, looks for excuses to take action in fighting against the vietnamese domination, but refuse to make slightest effort to help our fellow countrymen in Cambodia to develop our language and to use it in the universities, as in other countries of our area. The education of universities in national language is the only means to form quickly a big number of scientists, technicians of all levels, archaeologists, philosophers, historians etc. And at the same time bring up of knowledge’s level within the people by books of popularizations in any kind, including the books on the religion especially the Buddhism.

Once again, we publish below a long extract of the Conference made by Louis Malleret in 1946, diffused first time on Thursday, February 23rd 2004, and in 2006, because it remains always of current events even nowadays, especially in Cambodia of today. We would like to mention that this text was translated into Cambodian by Eng Sereiboth, distributed by Angkor Borei News (Long Beach in California) in 2004 and also by Ku Srahsrey magazine (Part 1), Year 2, No. 24 November on 2007 (pp 55-61) :

The vietnamisation of Cochinchina during colonial period and
Cambodia nowadays
(Unofficial translation from french by Khemara Jati)

Extract of the Conference given by L. Malleret on « The Minority of Cambodian in Cochinchina published in the Bulletin of the Société des Etudes Indochinoises, volume XXI 1st half of year 1946.

« It is happened to me, by crossing the provinces of Cochinchina, some times by walk, on horseback, in cart or in sampan, to accept the frank hospitality of the Cambodian pagodae. One in a hurried to bring me some coconuts to quench my thirst, whereas I offered in return incenses or a package of tea. In the rest hall of the hosts, a mat is widened and, when the air is pure and light, I do not know any feeling more serene than that to extend over the sieves of bamboo of these houses on pilotis, whereas the monks dressing in saffron pass silently in the classes and although a roguish wind murmurs in the high bundles of coconut palms.

« But often, I arrived at the time when the pagoda’s school loudly of the rustle of the young children and it drives me quite naturally to evoke here the problem of the education which settles under a grave aspect, for the Cambodian minority of Cochinchina. This forms a homogeneous group, by her language, her religion, her customs, her tradition. Attached to protect her manners, she feels reluctant to send her children to the French-annamite school and has only very rarely of French-Khmer schools.

« We tried up to here to solve the difficulty by favoring the development of the traditional education in the pagodae’s schools. These are three types. Some are independent and, therefore, escape completely of our control. We counted 95 in 1944, gathering 1 038 pupils. Others are subsidized. There was 20 at the beginning of 1945, with 571 pupils. Finally, for fifteen years, we attempted to multiply the number of the pagoda's schools called “renewed”, where the education is given by monks, who followed a training of perfection, in Phnom Penh, at Tra-vinh or at Soc-trang and that we try hard to advise as much as allowing the right of glance that we can appropriate on establishments of almost exclusively religious. The number of the schools of this type started from 37 in 1930, to 90 in 1936, and to 209 in 1944, among which we counted 1 093 girls, up to here traditionally pushed away from the education profit. In the same time, the number of official French-Khmer schools did not exceed 19 with only 30 teachers.

« Here, there is a problem which draws attention. Whatever the care which we brought to the training of the monk-teachers, the creation of the pagoda's schools, even though “renewed”, is only a means of fortune, which would not know how to replace an education of normal type for two cycles : the one elementary, where the vehicle of the education can remain into the Cambodian, the other one additional with initiation into the French's knowledge. But we collide with the difficult question to recruit the teachers and all the begun efforts, for the school penetration, in the Cambodian countries, are paralyzed by this numeric and qualitative lack of staff. Then I shall still move here a wish in favor of Cambodians of Cochinchina. It is because the number of the elementary and primary French-Khmer's schools is quickly greater. So as to form people provided with basic school-leaving qualification, capable, some to become auxiliary teachers, the others to receive a first contingent of pupils-teachers, in teachers-training colleges, in which it will be necessary to avoid, if we certainly intend to break down the policy of primary education with discount, which was followed in Indochina, since the economic crisis of 1929-1933.

« This problem affects not only in the obligation to grant to the Cambodian children of Cochinchina the primary academic standard of which they entitled. It contains also the serious question of an elite's recruitment. In the Cambodian minority of the Low-Mekong, as well as in the whole of Cambodia, the fact to be observed is that this society is totally deprived really of ruling class except the clergy. In the old Khmer kingdom, it is often Annamites who supply the contingent of the civil servants of the administration
[1] or who occupy the liberal occupations, and this situation, the Cambodians of whom are the first ones in alarming, without much reacting, seems having very long previous history. It is remarkable, indeed, that the decline of this country coincided with the time when Moslem invasions occurred in India. From the moment when Cambodia was deprived of the frame brought by brahmanes, it seems that its decay began[2]. There are some reasons indeed which causing the dried up of an elite's recruitment that happended at the same effects, in the former Fou-nan, when the Siameses opposed recently to the Cambodian nation's recovery, by massacring ruling classes or by taking them in captivity during their raids.

« What ever how it may, the urgent work, the necessary work, is to grant to the Cambodian minority of Cochinchina the means to protect her personality, while creating for her, schools and especially by breaking from the congrue's portion way which is consisting to pay to Cambodian municipal teachers derisory salaries, as it was the case in Cochinchina, in 1943, when the teachers recruited in a difficult moment, received for the price of their professional activity, included reparations, twenty one piastre a month

« The problem of the school penetration, in this minority, is not the only one who deserves to require our willingness, but it is of a major importance, because all the others derive from the ignorance where the Cambodian farmer found of her rights. Very attached to her land, she is not armed to defend her patrimony, and often becomes the victim of incredible despoliations. Her monks who are her natural guardians and who maintained them in the way of a magnificent high moral remain strictly attached to the tradition and without cares on the obligations and the rigors of the modern existence. The “ achars”, respected old men whom one seek advices in difficult occasions, are, them either, no other than of very nice people attached to the non-written custom, and divested of resources, in front of the merciless necessities of a social organization, where the good faith of the weak is exposed to hard assaults.

« The contact of two populations, the one active and enterprising, the other apathetic person and the traditionalist, consumes daily abuses, which our country would not know how to cover with their indifference, and seems raising of federal arbitrage mission which is devolved to the responsible in Indochina. I know a conglomeration of Long-xuyen province, where the fusion of the Cambodian village with an annamite village, decision made without precaution by the authority, result to the complete dispossession of her municipal lands from the first one (Cambodian village) for the benefit of the second (village annamite) which was poor, in the way that the school of this one (village annamite) became prosperous, whereas the school of the other one (Cambodian village) vegetates henceforth for lacking of resources
[4]. I shall also quote, a Cambodian hamlet of the province of Rach-gia, located far from roads and canals, one day the inhabitants of that place knew, by me, with bewilderment, that they were not any more owners of their lands where they are born. Their house having been incorporated into the Public domain, because having no regular title or not having been informed about the direction of the demarcation's operations, they had not appeared in front of the cadastral commissions[5].

« It is necessary to wonder if, in front of what they consider as arbitrary measures, the Cambodians abandon, sometimes en masse, certain villages, to flee the injustice and the despoliation. Creditors, annamites or Chinese, make illiterate Khmer farmers sign leonine acts which succeed, in brief term, in the total dispossession of the debtor. The evil had become so obvious and the wear very usual of similar expropriations that the French administration had to become alarming of it. In 1937, the visa of the recording was declared compulsory for the tickets of debts, with joint signature of the debtor and the creditor. At Tra-vinh, it seemed even necessary to require their presence during the registration of the mortgages on land registers.

« It would be wished, in another respect, that those were widened or strengthened some measures taken on the eve of the war by the French authority notably who prescribed that, in the mixed villages, the Khmer element is represented by a number of notables, proportional to her importance, or still, the one who established an auxiliary officer of marriage certificate, in the villages where Cambodian are in majority. But these measures could become completely effective, only if the appointed notables be part of it, under certain conditions and according to the numeric importance of the minority, among the most considerable of municipal council members.

« It is important also that the Cambodian element has the place from where she comes in the body of the elected members, whatever level they are established. We had proposed, about twenty years back, that the autonomous cantons, recovering directly from the superior authority, were organized, there where the minority appear in trainings enough compact to justify this measure. But we can conceive also that the name of leaders of Khmer cantons is compulsory declared, in the regions where the ethnic group is dominating, with cantons sub-commanders, there where it does not in the majority. Anyway, it is necessary that the Cambodians recover from civil servants or from councilors whom speaking their language and that, in the administrative competitions, certain number of places is reserved for the candidates for the public services, with temporarily, the special conditions. It seems indispensable that the Cambodian language is officially authorized, in the staff editorial of the requests or the administrative correspondence. Finally, we can only wish the development of the office of the Cambodian cases, which had been created on the eve of the war, with the cabinet of the Governor.

« More and more Cambodians became a certain important in Cochinchina in term of numbers. Far from being in recession, their number increases in every census. In 1888, they were 150 000 on 1 600 000 inhabitants. In 1925, they had become 300 000. On the eve of the war, we counted approximately 350 000, on a global population of less than 5 million inhabitants. Remarkable fact, their relations with the Chinese are excellent, and numerous Sino-Cambodian half-bloods who adopt gladly the customs of the mother which is rarely for the case of the half-bloods sino-annamites. The Khmers of Cochinchina maintain generally with Annamites the relations divested of sympathy. They (Annamites) call them with condescension, «Tho », which means the « people of the land », but they make contempt for contempt, by treating the others (Annamites) of «Yun », from the sanskrit « Yuvana », which means « Barbarian of the North »
[6]. It is certain that these hostilities, based on incompatibilities of customs, language, religion and also, on all the bitterness of old dispossessions, have the effect of maintaining a state of latent friction, harmful to the social peace, and which requires the control of an arbitrator.

« In this case, Cochinchina appears par excellence, as a federal land, where pathetic France in weak and generous to loyal subjects, has to make prevail solutions of justice and to restore the balance which tends to destroy in the world, coarse selection of the strongest. It is up to her to award to the Cambodian minority of the Low-Mekong, a political status which again was never defined clearly, to protect her rights by administrative measures, to maintain her cultural originality, to protect especially her real-estate fortune, patrimony which diminishes a little by little every day, by the effect of incredible abuses. I add that our country would not know how to lose interest either, of the moral condition of these populations. The Cambodian minority of Cochinchina traditionally leaned on the Buddhism of the South, whereas Annam adopted the Buddhism of the North. It belongs to France, old Christian and liberal nation, to become for the Southeast Asia a Buddhist metropolis like by Africa a Moslem metropolis. It is not any more the secret, that Japan had tried to organize in its profit, the sects of the Buddhism in Indochina, and that Siam pursued for a long time in Cambodia, the same purposes, for reasons of territorial expansion. The Cambodian monks of Cochinchina are placed in the brilliance of the Phnom Penh Buddhist Institute, also having ties with Laos, institute of federal chatered, the development of which is desirable and the importance would not know how to be underestimated. »


Nowadays in Cambodia, does not Vietnam is vietnamising Cambodia by making everything to hinder the development of the Cambodian language by all means and with major powers interested supports? China thinks only of developing the education in Chinese language, the United States and the others think only of developing the education in English language, France thinks only of developing the education in French language, Japan thinks only of developing the education in Japanese language.

Now Cambodia needs to form as fast as possible thousands, even thousands of thousand high-level engineers, thousands of thousands well formed technicians of any level. It is thus necessary to be able to select them most widely possible. It is thus necessary to take a particular care in the education in national language of primary classes to the high-level universities while favoring the learning of a foreign language as the second language. It is what takes place in all the developed countries of the world and also at our eastern as western neighbors.

We talk about the Special Economic Zones (SEZ) creation. It is curious to notice that this SEZ is granted in favor of private or foreign investments. On the other hand why some of these SEZ are curiously on our borders? This SEZ will need a big number of high-level engineers, high-level of administrators, technicians of all levels. Are not these SEZ responsibles going to take excuse of Cambodian lack of qualified personnel in order to recruit the Vietnamese staff in the East and the Thai staff on the West? Already the Cambodians in the East learn the vietnamese and the thai on the West? Is not Cambodia becoming another Cochinchina? Vietnam using the same strategy as France of colonial period for vietnamising Cochinchina?

In fact does not the President or Prime Minister of major powers are the great commercial or trade representative traveling all around the globe seeking to sell the products of their country ? Do not major powers dedicate enormous capital investing to develop the research and the high-technology industries? The policy does not consist in making only politics. The perpetuity of a nation lies in the development of its enriched written culture constantly in exchange with the other cultures and also by the development of its economy which cannot be managed by her own citizens. In brief, educated people are the base of the perpetuity of a nation. One call educated People when 10 % of the population are at university level and 50 % of the adult people buy at least one book per years. When will it be the case of Cambodia?

Are we so blind at the point of flowing in Kampuchea Krom experience, in Thailand and now in Cambodia? Are we capable of lighting or switching on a small candle instead of spending time complaining each other, accusing the past and cursing the darkness of our future ?

Note : Remarks are provided by Khemara Jati.

Le dimanche 4 novembre 2007
[1] It is about the colonial administration in Cambodia.
[2] Regretably, Malleret refers to the theses of Coedes. Thesis refuted by B.-P. Groslier.
[3] We would wish that Malleret also gives us informations on the annamites teacher’s salary.
[4] It is necessary to underline that the French administration of Cochinchina was in the hands of Annamites. The decision of fusion of both villages was thus intended to come to the result noticed by Malleret. The text of Malleret is of 1946. How many such decisions were taken since the beginning of the colonization, since 1860? There is still no research to know if Cambodians were minority in Cochinchina at the time when the Frenchmen arrived. Can we totally rely on the censuses made by the colonial authorities which were in the Annamite's hands? On the other hand the Cochinchina's borders moved westward in the Cambodia lost. We have witnesses who say that there was few Annamites in Saigon and none on Koh Tral's Island at the beginning of the XXth century. Mak Phœun in his article « The border between Cambodia and Vietnam of the XVIIth century during the French protectorate insitution, presented through the Khmer Royal chronicles », in « The Borders of Vietnam », supervised by P.B. Lafont, Ed. Harmattan, Paris 1989, pages 136 - 155.
[5] The demarcation's operations and the cadastral commissions made by the non-French agents and the other technical services, were 100 % annamites, in Cochinchina as well as in Cambodia.
[6] Unfortunately Malleret does not give the reference of his assertion. Until this day, there is no serious historic research on the previous history of the words Youn and Cochinchina for example. Nevertheless Youn comes from Yué or Viet. Vietnam = Yué of the South (nan = the South in chinese). The Chinese always name their neighbour of the South: Youan-nan. The term " Cochinchina " appeared the first time on the Indo-Chinese peninsula map drawn up by an unknown Portuguese by 1580; also on the "Oriental India" map according to the Mercator map (1613). These two maps are in " Indochina " in 2 volumes of Georges Maspéro, Ed. G. Van Oest, on 1929; also in the China map, in the Atlas of Mercator published by Jocondus Hondius, Amsterdam, on 1606, The Stapleton Collection. On these three maps Cochinchina is in China of the South, in the North of Champa and Camboia.

Kong Korm's Letter

Of the Kingdom of Cambodia

Paris, October 26th, 2007.

To the attention of Mr. Christian PONCELET
President of the Senate of the French Republic

In my capacity as President of the 7th Commission of the Senate of the Kingdom of Cambodia, at this moment, host of the Senate of the French Republic in Paris,

I have the honor to present my respects and my most sincere thanks to Mister President of the Senate of the French Republic for his warm reception as well as his contributions in the friendship and in the cooperation between the French Senate and the Cambodian Senate.

I would like to take this opportunity to call from your high benevolence the favor to revise the Law N° 49-733 of June 4th, 1949 modifying the status of Cochin China in the French Union (done in Toulon, on June 4th, 1949) signed by Vincent AURIOL, 1st President of the IVth Republic, in particular the article 3: in case of the change of the Vietnam Status, the Status of Cochin China will be the object of a new consideration of the Assemblies foreseen in the article 75 of the Constitution (Title VIII: Of the French Union) etc. …

I please you, at the same occasion, to allow me to remind you that, since the promulgation of the Law Nۜ°49-733 of June 4th, 1949, the territory and the population of Khmer origin of Kampuchea Krom, in particular their culture, their language, their religion, their customs and traditions, their ancestral rights are threatened and destroyed bit by bit. The policy of vietnamization of the territory and the Cambodian population of Kampuchea Krom and the pursuit of aggression on the territory of Cambodia remaining, led by the Vietnamese government as showed in the attempt of annexation of Cambodia of January 7th, 1979, would constitute as a the danger of disappearance of Cambodia if there was no agreement of Paris of October 23rd, 1991, recognized by the UN of the Federation of Khmers of Kampuchea Krom as the member of the Autochtonous Peoples recognized by the organization UNPO (Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization) of the same Union as the member of Right. The law relative to the persons belonging to national and ethnic minorities voted by the UN on September 13th, 2007 constitutes the most solid base in favor of Kampuchea Krom and of her population of Khmer origin.

According to the maps of Indochina published in 1638 and 1850, Kampuchea Krom was really a part of the Cambodian territory. I would please you to refer to the letter N° 1 dated November, 1853 and the letter N° 2 of November, 1856 of Her Majesty Ang Duong, King of Cambodia, communicated with the emperor Napoleon III, telling the sovereign power of the Kingdom of Cambodia on the territory of Kampuchea Krom. On the same pattern, King Norodom Sihanouk, on June 18th, 1949, wore in the knowledge of the emperor of Japan, the letters of the King Ang Duong to the attention of Napoleon III. During his intervention by the 16th General assembly of United Nations, King Norodom Sihanouk considered the French-Vietnamese Agreements of 1948 as nil and void as well as the French Law of 1949: he asserted fiercely that the territory of Kampuchea Krom was always the justifiable property of the Kingdom of Cambodia.

In my capacity as President of the 7th Commission of the Senate of the Kingdom of Cambodia in charge, among others, of the culture and thus the history, I would bring my support without reserve to the resolution of June 4th, 2003 elaborated by the Cambodian Community of Kampuchea Krom reitering to the Parliament and to the French government to cancel the Law N° 49-733, resolution was also supported by King Norodom Sihanouk in the name of her People and was brough in the knowledge of the Cambodian public on June 8th, 2003.

Against the strategy of more and more wild destruction and, ultimately oppression of the Cambodian population and the race of the Kampuchea Krom, stirred up by the Socialist Republic of Vietnam,

In the name of the Cambodian population of the Kampuchea Krom origin and the Khmer People of Cambodia,

I would emphatically ask to the Senate, to the National Assembly as well as to the French government, in their quality of former Defender of Cambodia and recently of Co-president of the Paris Agreements of 1991, to revise, to resolve the problem of Kampuchea Krom territory, on her population of Cambodian origin and on the Kingdom of Cambodia to assure and insure their perpetuity.

In the strong hope to improve the cooperation between France and Cambodia, allow me to express my thankful to you, and I would like to please you to accept, Mister the President, the expression of my distinguished consideration.

The former Minister of the Foreign affairs
President of the 7th Commission of the Senate
of the Kingdom of Cambodia.

Copy to :
- The UN
- Government of the French Republic,
For exam and resolution
- Norodom Sihanouk,
- Permanent committee of the Senate,
- Cambodian community of Kampuchea Krom
For support for the royal message of June 8th, 2003

Unofficial translation and Posted by Khemara Jati

Optic Cable to Connect China and US

News From Cambodia

Optic cable `Trans Pacific Express' to connect China, US
AFP AND AP, BEIJING Wednesday, Oct 24, 2007, Page 11

China has begun laying a fiber optic cable worth US$500 million to the US that will be vital in meeting booming Internet traffic between the two nations, state press reported yesterday.

The "Trans Pacific Express" cable will directly link China with South Korea, Taiwan and the US, greatly increasing Internet speeds between the regions, the China Daily reported.

Work laying the cable began in the coastal city of Qingdao on Monday, with completion of the trans-oceanic line scheduled for next July, the paper said.

US telecom giant Verizon Communications has announced that they would work with firms from China, South Korea and Taiwan to build a fiber optic cable link between China and the United States.

The terminus of the cable, which will also be able to transmit high definition television signals during the Beijing Olympics, will be in Nedonna Beach, Oregon, it said.

Current US-Chinese cable links run through Japan, but Beijing sees Tokyo as a regional rival and has long wanted an independent connection to the US.

The new cable is expected to help avoid breakdowns in trans-oceanic Internet traffic similar to what occurred following a 7.1-magnitude earthquake that struck the seabed near Taiwan on Dec. 26, snapping undersea telecom cables.

The quake caused major communications disruptions in Taiwan, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and elsewhere.

Investors in the new cable include US telecom giant Verizon Communications Inc, Chinese companies China Telecom Ltd (中國電信), China Netcom Ltd (中國網通) and China Unicom Ltd (中國聯通), as well as Korea Telecom Corp and Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信), reports said.

The cable is to have connections to South Korea and Taiwan but none to Japan, according to its developers.

According to previous reports, construction of the 26,000-kilometre (16,000-mile) cable began on the US side in the first quarter of 2007.

The Vietnamese domination of Cambodia

News from Cambodia N° 0733-E

Son Chhay and the vietnamese domination

We publish below declarations of the Deputy Son Chhay on the vietnamese domination in Cambodia under the kind of exploitation of the Rubber plant on 100 000 hectares of our lands.

We would like first of all to congratulate Son Chhay on his intervention which answers to the fundamental concerns of our fellow countrymen where ever they are. However, we like to underline that Son Chhay did not clarify about these former officers and soldiers of the Popular Army of Vietnam who come to settle definitively on our home with their family, women and children. It is a part of Hanoi plan to transform our country into vietnamese province. They are real colonies of populating as during colonial period. It is necessary to clarify also that the rubber production will be exported by the port of Prey Nokor as vietnamese rubber, as it is, already, the case for a million tons of Cambodian rice every year. This rice produces mainly in the eastern part of our country.

On this subject of the vietnamese colonization / settlers, we wish to add that the Vietnamese are widely profitable, even before the exploitation of these 100 000 hectares of our lands, by the sale of the pluri-hundred-years-old precious wood productions by plundering of our forests only.

On the other hand, let us call back that the vietnamese Sokimex company already owns immense lands in the big cities of Cambodia, in particular in Phnom Penh and at Sihanouk-ville and their province in the neighborhood; that the Vietnamese yeay Phu alone already swallows about 8 % of our territory?

We wish that Son Chhay or / and the other numerous patriotic personalities give us or express their opinion to the public onto a certain number of the other problems, unfortunately regrettably not exhaustive, which make that our country is becoming gradually to a vietnamese province very soon.

1 / For the independence of a country, the independence of energy is one of the fundamental factors, like the other country around the world.

a / Why attributing to the vietnamese companies of two hydroelectric dams construction in our provinces of the Northeast ? We know on the other hand that in order to build these dams, the Vietnamese are going to come to settle down definitively with their family including women, children and friends. Like already the case for the other constructions for examples of roads coming from Vietnam which continuing on our territory to drain our wealth towards the port of Prey Nokor? More, this electricity will be sold to Cambodians, by the vietnamese company, with big profit, because of the monopoly situation. The electricity on the West, up to Siem Reap is from Thailand. During the conflict with Thailand concerning the tourist exploitation of Preah Vihear Temple, Thailand threatened to cut its electricity. So to depending our energy especially electricity of our neighbors is to take place under the constant threat to be deprived of it. Why voluntarily put ourselves under the energy dependence of our neighbors? Why voluntarily put the independence of Cambodia under the energy dependence of our neighbors?

b / We know now that we have an important quantity of petroleum and natural gas. Why not, from now on, envisaging the construction of an oil refinery? A refinery of petroleum produces the other numerous products beside the gasoline. Let us remind that before 1970, Cambodia has an oil refinery near our first seaport Sihanouk-ville. All the independent countries have access to the sea, possess at least a port. Most of the seaports in the world are among most big cities of the planet. Some are even capitals of the country like London, Bangkok and Tokyo for example. Why, from now on, not envisaging projects to build electric thermal power stations to supply the electricity to the whole country? Instead of building networks lines with high tensions from our neighbors, in particular from Laos and from Vietnam, supplying electricity to our provinces of the North, the Northeast and East? Up to the neighborhood of Phnom Penh?

c / Why does the vietnamese Sokimex company continue to enjoy certain monopolies by importing the gasoline bought from Vietnam? Why, in Cambodia, the gas cost 50 % more expensive than at our neighbors? By plundering our wealth since its creation in 1979, Sokimex has a war treasure of several billions of US dollars, even dozens billions of US dollars! Now it is a State in the State and enjoys a total impunity.

d / Why contracts with foreign companies concerning the research and the exploitation of our wealth in hydrocarbons, remain always secret even for the Members of Parliament ? Is Sokimex associated in the exploitation of our wealth in hydrocarbons? Are there engineers, technicians and Cambodian administrators in the investigations, the exploitations of our petroleum and our gas?

In fact, why placing Cambodia under the total dependence of our neighbors, in particular in the energy matter : electricity and gasoline, while we have all the means for, not only to protect our energy independent but to sell more our energy wealth to our neighbors and in the world?

2 / The political independence depends largely on the economic independence. The economic independence passes by the importance of the national scientific and technical staff for all levels and in all subjects, capable of producing and of managing the whole economic device of the country.

Why for example, nowadays, does the French-Vietnamese Hospital of Prey Nokor outstrip by far the French-Cambodian Hospital in Phnom Penh? Why are we obliged to go to make analyze report in Vietnam the DNA of Cambodian Ko Prey ? Let us remind that during colonial period, in Cambodia, the Vietnamese had almost the same statutes as the Frenchmen. The Cambodians pay more tax per capita than the Vietnamese in Vietnam. Let us remind also that the Vietnamese in Cambodia did pay almost no tax! Because likened to Frenchmen! So the Vietnamese pupils at the secondary school Sisowath, in Phnom Penh, different from the Cambodian pupils, did not pay tax! It was the reason of the first strike of the Cambodian pupils in 1936! That, during colonial period, the best hospitals, the best secondary schools, all the scientific establishments as Institutes Ministers and the University are all in Vietnam! Built with the cooperation of the taxes raised in Cambodia. During the Japanese occupation, in the countryside, a Cambodian family had only a single dress to go out! Other members of the family, had to cloister themselves at home quite nude! Cambodia had no right to make some salt from their own sea water! Cambodia had to buy the salt produced in Vietnam. All the business of Cambodia was run by Prey Nokor! Why do major powers continue to impose us the same policies as during colonial period?

On the other hand, should not we revise profoundly our education system? Besides, to increase the salary of the teachers and professors? Should not we send a delegation, including high-level Cambodian specialists, to investigate on this subject in Vietnam, in Thailand, in Malaysia and in Finland? These countries which, as Malaysia and Finland, are spent within thirty years from poor countries to become rich countries with full employment? Let us remind that our neighbors already get ready to build nuclear power stations to produce some electricity. In when our turn?

An independent country passes first of all by the existing of the industries of high professional skill, means the industries with high added value, which requires the training of the engineers and the high-level scientists in great number. In Vietnam every year, more than 30 000 engineers of very high level are formed, without adding the technicians of all levels. Proportionally to the populations, it would be necessary to form in Cambodia at least 6 000 engineers of very high level yearly! When will be the case? How can we form quickly these engineers and scientists if the education in university is ruling all in foreign languages? English, French and Chinese? Is it the case to the countries which we have just quoted earlier? And in all other independent country? Comparing our country to Singapore and to India it is to underestimate totally the history and the education situation of these two countries! Why does Japan help Vietnam to develop the Vietnamese scientific and technical language?

3 / To develop the countryside, all independent countries develop the internal roads to facilitate the communications of peoples and the circulation of goods. It is the case of the countries that we have just quoted above ? When important projects to remedy this backward situation of our land communications, in particular towards our cities and villages in our borders? How to defend our borders if the best roads start from our borders towards our neighbors? Already the business at the border is ruling mainly towards our neighbors? For lack of being able to make it in Cambodia!

4 / The independence of a country is above all the territorial and maritime integrity of the country. Why Son Chhay or / and the other patriotic personalities are not going any more visiting our fellow countrymen living on our borders? Why not encouraging the national and international tourism towards Angkor Borei, capital of Fou Nan, one of the cradles of our civilization and our history? Angkor Borei, close to the Vietnamese border, is not it already vietnamized ? Why not asking official questions to delay concerning the installation of border points with Vietnam? Is it the asphalted road towards Preah Vihear is in construction? Otherwise in when? This road is going to irrigate at the same time our provinces of the North, already largely absorbing by the business with Thailand.

5 / The tourism develops very fruitfully. Angkor is the main engine of the development of the tourism in our region. This tourism influx benefits mainly our neighbors. Tourists coming from Vietnam, say that there is nothing as tourist in this country. So all the tourists coming in our region want to come to Angkor. So our neighbors and in particular Vietnam is obliged to include Angkor in the tourist journeys to visit Vietnam. Why Cambodia is the only country of the region without any airline company of international capacity? Before 1970, we had « Royal Air Cambodia » which was run well.

6 / To protect our territorial waters, it would be needed a navy capable of protecting it. We have military aids from the United States and China. On the other hand American and French warships come to cast anchor at Sihanouk-ville. Why does Cambodia remain, still incapable to prevent our neighbors from coming to plunder freely our halieutic wealth? Who will guarantee of offshore oil installations security? The navies of our neighbors? What are the necessity of having the good military relations with Washington, Paris and Beijing?

We wish that our fellow countrymen mobilize and gather on these questions concerning the future of our country and thus on the future of our children. Even only by the paper or / and by the public meetings.

How can we appreciate the helps value of major powers, if we do not know primarily what we need to defend long-term of our national independence? Our neighbors know very well what they need, of this fact they have good relations at the same time with the United States and China. In Vietnam, the Chinese heavy industries and the giant of the data processing Intel build in Prey Nokor a factory of a billion of US dollars to produce chips. Bill Gates is forming 15 000 vietnamese computer specialists of very high level. Why in Cambodia, there are only factories using, mainly, only the muscular forces and the Cambodian workers? Can Cambodia become, one day, an independent country without high-level industries technique ?

Below the full text of the declaration of Son Chhay in RFA:

The “secret” 100,000 hectares
of Cambodian rubber plantation
granted for Viet soldiers

Summary of the declarations made by SON CHHAY, SRP MP, Chairman of the Commission of Foreign Affairs and the International Cooperation of the National Assembly, interviewed by Kem Sos, RFA Program of 25/09/2007Summary and unofficial translation from Cambodian by Khemara JatiKem Sos (KS): - I knew that the Royal Government of Cambodia granted to Vietnam a concession of 100 000 ha of lands for the plantation of rubber trees, where are these lands?Son Chhay (SC): - We also know it and I went with a delegation of the National Assembly to make an inspection on the land, in the region of Mondulkiri and even in the vietnamese provinces of Dac Lak and Dac Nong. What worries us is our neighbors country obtains concessions of our lands then come to cultivate its fields in our country. In fact, it is Vietnamese soldiers who having been partially evacuated of Cambodia (in 1989), formed military movements for the plantations of rubber trees or coffee trees ... and who settling now in very big number in front of our border provinces, with any kinds of equipments, and took place under the orders of their generals and officers - forming a real military staff.KS: - Our fellow countrymen are very worried about of the Vietnamese schemes. In particular, in this affair of land concessions, what would be the profits for the Cambodians (Khmers)?SC: - According to a report of the Committee for the Development, an organ of the Royal Government, Vietnam would have promised to create employments for our fellow countrymen of the ethnic minorities in the region, as it has already did the same thing in Laos.Now, we went to see a rubber plantation by Vietnamese soldiers, on a Laotian concession of 10 000 ha, of 50 years, in the province of Champassak (of Laos) and learnt that really the Vietnamese promises were not held on the ground. First, the plantation is steered by 176 colonels and captains of the Vietnamese army, who called the "experts"; then, for 10 000 ha of plantation, one use approximately 1 000 Laotian workers, next to more than 3 000 Vietnamese workers. So, for our concessions of 100 000 ha for the same plantations, would be needed ten times more of these "experts" and workers (who form) the Vietnamese power (in our land). Besides, there is a problem affecting our environment. Our forests were destroyed by these companies without repairs and without compensation.KS: - Where are these 100 000 ha granted to the Vietnamese?SC: - Almost everywhere. There would be 20 000 ha in Mondulkiri, others 20 000 ha in Kratié, 10 or 20 000 in Stung Trèng, 30 000 in Kompong Thom and in Preah Vihear. The concessions of Kompong Thom are under the control of the Cambodian military, not under of the royal Government.KS: - The Cambodians (Khmers) cannot obtain these concessions?SC: - Many of our fellow countrymen invested a lot into the rubber tree plantation. During the last five years, Khmer entrepreneurs have already planted on at least 50 000 ha of lands. We would not even need foreigners for this fields; (I do not understand) why we grant no big concessions to our own fellow countrymen?We have to ask also questions on our national sovereignty and on our security. No country has ever allowed to the armed forces of a neighbor country the possibility of coming to settle down on its territory and to administer it.We should grant these concessions only to our national first; then, to the foreign companies (but) of not neighbor countries, and under certain precise conditions, especially on the duration - not too long - of these concessions, and the obligation to employ Cambodians (Khmers) first as workers.KS: - Why do not we grant these concessions to the Cambodians (Khmers)?SC: - We (the Parliament Members) do not understand. Of course, we wish of the transparency on these concessions and of course explain that to us the causes (decisions of the Government). But, the MP can ask no question there (to the Government, because) these concessions and all the documents related to that are all secrets (of the Government)!KS: - Have you an explanation of these secrets?SC: - I think it is because of the Vietnam influence on our country, on our leaders, to the point that these last ones have to give to any vietnamese demands ; the corruption is also another cause ; and, maybe as it is also believed that the foreigners have important financial and technical means for these things...KS: - Does our country gain anything from it?SC: - Cambodia loses a lot in this land. The concessions are made without any call for public tender. In the case of the tourist management of Angkor site, for example, our State receives hardly 10 % of the receipts of the tourist visits - at the rate of $50 - 60 US a person, a week. Every year, there is at least 30 million $US who do not go into the boxes of the State.With all this (destructions of the environment and these losses for the State), these concessions destroyed the appropriate interests of our local populations, in their daily life. We should thus stop these concessions.

(Summarized and unofficial translated from cambodian by Khemara Jati). Please click the following link to listen the whole interview :

The International Penal Court

News from Cambodia

In the wings of the International Penal Court of The Hague for Yugoslavia

Khemara Jati
Montreal, Quebec
October 6th, 2007

One of our readers in France sends articles relating to the International Penal Court for Yugoslavia at The Hague (IPCY). It may be interesting for our fellow countrymen who faced the situations of this kind. Let us remind however that the IPCY does not depend at 100 % of the UN and the major powers in term of financial support. It is a certain form of independent from UN and major powers pressure. Because it is one of the constancies of the history : the force never in the service of the Law. It is always the opposite : the Law is always used to justify the force’s victory. It is what every student learns from Faculties of Law. Any Court is always in the service of those who finance it. The popular saying always say “Might is right” ? It belongs to us, Cambodians, to draw the conclusions regarding what is happening in our country. We are expressing our sincere thank to our reader in France who lets us known these articles and also about the weekly Paris Match management which makes us known this very interesting book concerning the wings of this institution, nevertheless considered “impartial and irreproachable” !

« Florence Hartmann reveals everything on the wings of the International Penal Court of the Hague

Journalist of "Le Monde" during ten years, in particular correspondence to Belgrade, the author followed in first line the conflicts in ex-Yugoslavia before being expelled from the Serbian capital in twenty-four hours by Milosevic's regime. She publishes her first book in 1999, an edifying portrait of the Serbian president, still in power: « Milosevic, the diagonal of the fool ». Carla Del Ponte chooses her in 2000 as spokeswoman before choosing her as counselor on the Balkans. Hartmann leave The Hague in October 2006, few months after Milosevic's death. In the wings of the I.T.P. and the international institutions, in the trail of the prosecutor, she crossed the closed doors of the high diplomacy and attended uncountable many secret meetings and arm wrestling. From her return in Paris she begins the writing of « Peace and Punishment ». « For six years, I assisted in wings, in grave dysfunctions of the international justice and the policy - in blockings, failures, threats, low knocks, in the only purpose to camouflage the truths, whether they are heavy official secrets or simple particular interests. Now, the justice is in the service of the citizens, and the international justice is in the service of the humanity. In the public sphere, the right is inalienable. I dedicated this book to the victims of mass crimes because it is above all for them that the international justice exists.

« Paix et Châtiment, les guerres secrètes de la politique et de la justice internationales », unofficially translated to English as “Peace and Punishment, the secret wars of the international policy and the justice” of Florence Hartmann, edition Flammarion, 320 p. 19,90 euro. »

Please refer to : or

Paris Match du 19 – 26 septembre 2007

The sabotage of the International Penal Court (IPC). Europe and the United States were warned of crimes.

« I.P.C. was conceived as an alibi, not to work and certainly not to judge the first chief of state charged with genocide! This stillborn Court had to content to be a simple threat to brandish during the negotiations « to defuse any vague desire to answer by military force to the current exactions », writes Florence Hartmann in her book called « Peace and punishment, the secret international wars of politics and justice ». But when, thanks to the will of someone, I.T.C. can finally make inquiries, establish accusations and judge the charged persons, it is perceived by the Quai d’Orsay, then invested by Hubert Védrine, « as the worst idea of these last years ».

Certain members of Security Council (of the UN) want to close the Court in 2010. Nevertheless, both the most symbolic fugitives, Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic - Political and military responsibles of the Serbs of Bosnia, hired men of Milosevic, culprits, among others atrocities of the genocide of Srebrenica - were not judged there. But the prosecutor Carla Del Ponte stands firm. Result of the arm wrestling : the Security Council imposes him important budgetary amputations, frank cuttings in suspects' list and in acts of accusation. Not to judge the criminals for genocide with whom major powers negotiated for a so long time, all means are good : coring of the Court, pressures, interventions, proofs receiving, systematic sabotage of Milosevic lawsuit, organized of the fugitive escape.

« The United States of America is the first ones to prevent the Court from becoming emancipated. They always wanted it under custody, placed under the Security Council authority », described Florence Hartmann.

To know the progress of the military actions of the Bosno-Serbian army, given up to Karadzic and Mladic by Belgrade, the public prosecutor's department depends on experts of the Military Analyst Team (M.A.T.). Its members are all, without exception, English and Americans and continue exempting Milosevic of any implication in the massacres in Bosnia and especially in the genocide of Srebrenica.

The Westerners hide the proofs

« The information, collected throughout the conflict by major powers, would have allowed the public prosecutor's department of I.P.C. to confuse immediately most high officials of the atrocities which continued in ex-Yugoslavia », notices Hartmann.

But the Court will often lose years and years to gather documents necessary for the accusations (verbatim, listening, satellite images, videos). By handling back to the Court the listening and the other compromising elements for Belgrade detaining since the beginning of the war, the Westerners would have allowed to be informed about the crimes when they were committed, as well as their preliminary organization. The existence of these proofs in the hands of the Westerners would have revealed their choice not to intervene, nevertheless against their international obligations.

Sometimes anecdotes come to support the merciless demonstration of Hartmann. So, when Del Ponte informs the international community that she will need NATO forces to arrest an accused person, « unbelieving, a high official of the American State department exclaims: « how can you have collected enough proofs to charge him while we gave nothing to you? » And to clarify: « naturally, we had nothing! ».

Florence Hartmann tells a violent exchange at the White House between the vice-president Al Gore and the Swede Carl Bildt, charged by the European Community to negotiate with Milosevic. We are at the beginning of August 1995, one month after the massacre of Srebrenica, Bildt asserts without reddening that « Milosevic was the main Serbian ally in the efforts for two years »! Choked Al gore proves him the opposite: he reads him an extract of the American transcriptions of the phone-tapping in which Milosevic gives orders to Mladic during the operations against Srebrenica. The public prosecutor's department will ask in vain for the minutes of this meeting to the White House. « Neither Al gore, nor Carl Bildt, nor Michel Steiner, the German negotiator, nor the Frenchman Alain Dejammet, nor British Pauline Neville-Jones who participated in this matter agree to testify in front of I.P.C., gets indignant Florence Hartmann.

Carla Ponte will tear away from the Serbian government of the crucial documents : Karadzic and Mladic did not act to Srebrenica without Milosevic approval. Summarized in the book, the verbatim is not expurgated by the Supreme Council of the Defence (S.C.D) of Belgrade denouncing the Milosevic's fault in the genocide of Srebrenica. But the room of the judges accepted the condition of Belgrade: never return these public proofs.

« The biggest democracies preferred to deceive during ten years the public opinion to protect these two criminals rather than arrest them, summarizes Florence Hartmann. The western powers which attended without moving in the massacres of Srebrenica (…) to offer then to Dayton lands covered with mass graves to the executioners, would have had many occasions to mean otherwise by words to regret them. They nevertheless refused themselves there in spite of the gravity of their fault. »

Indeed major powers always knew where were Karadzic and Mladic, and have arranged to facilitate their protection. For a long time both fugitives negotiated with the Westerners their freedom and their impunity. In NATO's H.Q., on October 17th, 1996, the message passed on to the prosecutor Louise Arbour is clear : « as starting point, NATO settled for a policy which is not to arrest the war criminals. » Worse : major powers have “exfiltré”[1] Radovan Karadzic of Bosnia in 1997 - violating then all the international laws, Karadzic being pursued by an international warrant for arrest.

Karadzic and Mladic have negociated their impunity

Jacques Chirac entrusting Carla Del Ponte, on February 29th 2000 : « Boris Eltsine said to me: Karadzic knows too many things about Milosevic » (…) And he warned me that he would send a plane to extract him from Bosnia if necessary, but that he would never let him be arrested. » “Exfiltré” in a Russian plane in Byelorussia, Karadzic soon has the homesickness, and major powers facilitate his return. Then they allow him to find the money necessary for financing of his escape. Western intelligence agents are in charge of his pursue fictitious. Among them the general Philippe Rondot who received mission by Jacques Chirac but without sufficient human resources to proceed to the slightest arrest! The unconfessed objective of this mission is its failure. The masquerades of arrests with noisy helicopters are above all, intended to prevent the fugitive that it's time to change house or convent. « Do not imagine that he is hiding without a hole as Saddam Hussein. He circulates freely, writes, meets his family », often reports Carla Del Ponte, without revealing that he has even the time to receive girlfriends.

Certain anecdotes would be funny if they were not also distressing. Although, in spring 2005, while « no anybody seems to know where is Karadzic » (dixit Del Ponte), « a Dutchman contacts the public prosecutor's department of The Hague. He assures to have seen Karadzic, on April 7th, in the terrace of a coffee shop together with a woman, in Foca (in the Serbian entity of Bosnia). Del Ponte asks NATO to verify the information. « Impossible, because Karadzic was from 6 till 8 April 2005 in Belgrade », retort, some days later, the American responsible for NATO, who asserted up to there, to have lost, them too, any track of Karadzic! ».

Mladic lives in seven apartments!

As the Russian and western governments, the office of Del Ponte handles the precise list of the hiding places of Mladic. Hartmann : « the rest centre of Stragari, near the town of Toponyme (…), another centre of rest of the army, at Rajac, near Valjevo, (…) Mladic is the guest of the general Zivanovic, his friend (…) Who owns a house near Gornji Milanovac (…) When Mladic is under medical treatment, in spring, 2001 then in 2002, at the military hospital of Belgrade (…) he walks in and out by the main door. He is present in the marriage of his son Darko and attends ceremonies in the military circle, in the heart of Belgrade. He frequents the restaurants of his district, attends matches of football. People of Belgrad often crosses him. » It also happens that he lives, simply « at his house in Belgrade ». Florence Hartmann: « From 2003, he navigates between seven apartments rented by his defenders, in the centre of Belgrade, under of false name which he changes every two or three weeks (…) Mladic has practically never left Serbia except for a short stays in his native country of oriental Bosnia on the occasion of family holidays » where he was never worried by the NATO forces. Hartmann dumps the nail: “the Westerners not only prevented the arrest of general [Mladic] (…) They also neutralized the action of I.P.T.” The list of the occasions missed of arrest was raised by Patric Lopez-Terres, the leader of the inquiries of I.P.T., but was not made public yet.

Sylvie Matton

Paris Match N° 3044 from 19 to 26 september 2007, pages 134-135-136.
Unofficially translated by Khemara Jati

[1] Exfiltrer : Put somebody out of reach (from arrests) decided by the international community.

Nuon Chea's arrest

News from Cambodia

Nuon Chea's Arrest Said Overshadowing Cambodia-Vietnam Border Marker Planting

Phnom Penh, Moneakseka Khmer in Cambodian,
22 Sep 07 - 23 Sep 07 pp 1,2 [Report by Kaeut Samrech]

In the past few days news about the arrest of chief murderer Nuon Chea, former chairman of the Khmer Rouge regime's National Assembly, has overshadowed many other important events in Cambodia, such as the planting of the Cambodian-Vietnamese border markers and the drafting of the anti-corruption law. As a matter of fact, the media have exclusively concentrated their coverage on the arrest of Nuon Chea and his detention at the Khmer Rouge Tribunal [KRT] while hushing up other incidents or paying them scant attention. Even the international observers and diplomats, as well as the nongovernmental organization officials have focused their attention only on the news about Nuon Chea being escorted from Pailin City to the KRT.
Border activists and independent observers recalled that a few months ago the map-confused man, Va Kimhong, publicly claimed that the Cambodian and Vietnamese sides had plans to install more than 100 land border markers before the end of 2007. However, since Va Kimhong made this public declaration the process of planting the border markers between Cambodia and Vietnam has remained secretive. No activities to this effect have been detected. Since 27 September 2006 only four border markers have been planted by the Cambodian-Vietnamese sides at the main border gates where they were officially inaugurated. Besides these four markers, no changes have been noted.
The border activists and independent observers said that at the current rate the planting of 370 markers along the 1,270-km border will never be completed before the end of 2008 as claimed by Va Kimhong, because the planting of the Cambodian-Vietnamese border markers must face many obstacles, especially the difficult terrain such as in Mondul Kiri and Rotanakiri provinces. Therefore, even if the treaty supplemental to the 1985 state border demarcation treaty is implemented, there is no chance the border markers planting will be completed before 2008 as planned.
At the ceremony planting the initial Cambodian-Vietnamese border marker at the Bavet-Moc Bai pass in the morning of 27 September 2006 both the power-addicted man, Prime Minister Hun Sen, and Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung publicly announced that the two sides would complete the planting of six other main border markers before the end of 2006. Now, at the approach of the end of 2007 the two sides have been able to plant only four markers. Therefore, it is impossible that the 370 markers along the 1,270-km stretch of the common frontier will be planted in time by the end of 2008, only with the exception that the two sides secretly plant the land border markers without letting the national and international circles know about it.
A number of civic organization officials are worried that the Cambodian-Vietnamese sides would surreptitiously plant the land border markers first before they announce the result because the map-confused man, Va Kimhong, used to assert that the Cambodian-Vietnamese border is a bilateral matter. If this incident did happen, criticisms would fly in from all directions even if the Cambodian-Vietnamese sides claimed that they were implementing the treaty supplemental to the 1985 state border demarcation treaty. This is because if the planting of the border markers was done secretly Cambodia would stand to lose much territory.
As for the Cambodian people living along the Cambodian-Vietnamese border, such as those in Dong commune, Romeas Hek district, Svay Rieng province, and in Trapeang Phlong commune, P'nhea Krek district, Kampong Cham province, they want the planting of the Cambodian-Vietnamese border markers to be completed as soon as possible to prevent the Vietnamese from continuing to commit aggression against and encroach on Cambodian territory as they please. Such is the will of the Cambodian people living along the Cambodian-Vietnamese border because they have heard the megalomaniac Hun Sen bragging that the treaty supplemental to the 1985 treaty would be beneficial to Cambodia. For this reason, they want the process of planting the border markers along the Cambodian-Vietnamese land border be completed as soon as possible so that they would know how many square kilometers of territory Cambodia gains from Vietnam, and where.
So far, some of the people who live in Dong commune, Romeas Hek district, have lost their rice fields and crop orchards to the land-grab actions of the Vietnamese. Others cannot enter their ancestral land to grow crops there, because this land is considered part of the White Zone. Therefore, the sooner the planting of the land border markers between Cambodia and Vietnam is completed the better, and if consequently Cambodia gains tens of thousands of square kilometers from Vietnam it will be even better.
Nevertheless, former King Norodom Sihanouk does not recognize the treaty supplemental to the 1985 state border demarcation treaty as he has called it an illegal treaty contrary to the 23 October 1991 Paris peace agreement. As for Sean Pengse, president of the Paris-based Cambodian Border Committee, he has already declared that this supplemental treaty cannot stop Vietnamese aggression, for Cambodia itself has already violated the Paris peace agreement. The border activists and independent observers are continuing to monitor the process of planting the Cambodian-Vietnamese land border markers very closely, for after the planting of the four main border markers at the border gates it is not yet seen that Cambodia has gained a square inch of territory from Vietnam. On the contrary, it is the Vietnamese authorities who have continued to violate Cambodia's sovereignty with arrogance, such as the cases that took place in the border regions of Rotanakiri and Kampong Cham provinces.

[Description of Source: Phnom Penh Moneakseka Khmer in Cambodian -- Widely-read anti-government daily newspaper affiliated to the Sam Rainsy Party, with occasional pro-US stances evident.]

Published by Khemara Jati
October 5th, 2007

The Confidence in the Future of Cambodia

News From Cambodia N° 0739E

The confidence in the future of Cambodia, Does the example come from the people?

Khemara Jati
Montreal, Quebec
November 15th, 2007

We publish below two articles on a poor farmer’s son of Cambodia namely Chay Lo, now known as one of « the most remarkable young of the planet »! These two articles raise the difficult course of this young 31-year-old Cambodian. He had to fight against many difficulties of which the disease. His merit is inseparable of a network of support and helps of many French personalities such as Mrs Dumas, Mrs Virginie Legrand, Professor of medicine Bernard Andreassian, Doctor Patricia Labourier, François Jacquenoud. We gratefully thank these personalities for their helps which allowing a young Cambodian to realize his dream.

Chay Lo chose a wife who shares his dream. Because agreeing to live in couple with 500 US dollars a month, even in Cambodia, with his knowledge and his invention, is not already a great example which deserves to be underlined?

By so doing, Chay Lo gives a lesson to other Cambodians, in particular those who live easily abroad! Instead of spending time cursing the past and complaining about the darkness, Chay Lo switches on and lights up a small candle.

There are also Cambodian professors of university in France, retired or not, in cooperation with other colleagues of the French universities, with helps of Cambodian and French companies and the international and French organizations, with finally the contributions, which we wish more numerous, of Cambodian community abroad, who, for the last fifteen years, organize the NGO to transfer their scientific and technical knowledge to our fellow countrymen in Cambodia. The formed Cambodian technicians, of level BTS (Bacc + 3 years) are, now very popular and guarantee comfortably their life. So these Cambodian professors and companies with the helps of their French colleagues have other candles to fight against the darkness. So these multitudes of candles will eventually light up slowly the darkness and ignorance.

« Tak Tak Penh Bampoang, Chong Chong Roling Theng »
(Drop by drop the glass will fulfill, with big fountains, the glass will be knocked down) a Cambodian saying.

We reproduce the last paragraph of the second article:

« Since the childhood, he (Chay Lo) is convinced that he owes to « help the poors rather than to work only with rich people. » Chay Lo asks « if everybody is interested only in the big companies, then who is going to help people of the rural zones? » A way of making with the smile, which was given to him ».

This example shows that Cambodian people conceal enormous possibilities if we give her only the possibility of having education properly. Our country needs dozens, even hundreds of thousand of Chay Lo. Can the education system of the current regime, with foreign languages in universities, allow Cambodian student the possibility of forming quickly high education such as engineers or technicians in big amount as at our neighbors? Naturally there is also a problem of the very badly paid professors and the medieval programs. With the current system, how can we share the fundamental knowledge from all people of the developed countries of the world to the whole Cambodian people? François Ponchaud blames that our language is being poor in abstract words.. It's true, but who helps us to develop our language of the words which are missing? All languages of the world are evolving quickly with the development of the sciences and the techniques. It is not necessary to invent inevitably new words to express the totality of the new concepts of the modern knowledge. In the past our people have already adopted the word « Sabou » for soap, the word « butters » etc. Nowadays, Cambodians adopted the word "Computer" appoint computers. All the languages of the world are evolving quickly with the development of the sciences and the techniques. This education's development can be made only in the development of the mother tongue of the country at universities as shown the multiple experiences in the world. For example, in Canada, how the French speakers are obliged to fight continuously against the English invasion. At present the problems in Belgium do not raise of language’s problems in schools and universities?

We wish that Chay Lo and the other Cambodians, help our people in an even more essential domain for the future of our country : the development of the education of the national language in universities, in particular in scientific, technical, philosophic domains and the other human sciences.

We wish that Chay Lo and other Cambodians help our people in an even more essential domain for the future of our country : the development of the education of the national language in universities, in particular in scientific, technical, philosophic domains and the other human sciences.

We wish that this exemplary route of our fellow countryman Chay Lo, gives acceleration to our fellow countrymen in the confidence in the future of our very dear Motherland.

Chay Lo Saved from Water

News from Cambodia


- Photo Aurélia Frey pour « Le Monde »

Unofficial translation from french made by Khemara Jati

The life gave several chances to this son of Cambodian farmers. He seized them all. Thanks to him, the water stops killing in certain villages of Cambodia. He has just received an international price.

1976: Born to Thropaing Tmor (the North of Cambodia).
1996: Operated immediately in France for a tumor in the lung.
1997: Admitted to the technological Institute of Cambodia in Phnom Penh.
2003: Admitted to the National School of the Rural Genius and Waters and Forests (ENGREF) in Paris.
2004: Cofounder of “1001 fountains for tomorrow”.
2007: Prize-winner of the price of the International Junior Chamber.

Funny place for a meeting with Chay Lo. In this brewery of the district of Madeleine in Paris, chosen as of the photo's requirements, the plate of seafood costs more than two months of an average wage in Cambodia. One needs more to disrupt the smile shining with this Cambodian of poor origin who obtained the engineering degree of Waters and Forests in France. Chay Lo, several times miraculously cured, always smiles.

The discreet young man reaches the light for his exceptional route: co-founder of the association called “1001 fountains for tomorrow”, who develops small stations of water's purification in the Cambodian villages, he received the price of the International Junior Chamber (IJC), on Tuesday, November 6th, at Antalya, in Turkey. He rewards every year « 10 young people among the most remarkable of the planet ».

His life, nevertheless, would have been able to - would have owed - to end brutally eleven years ago. In one thousand places of Phnom Penh, in his shop of the street Auguste-Comte in Lyon, Mine Dumas, antique dealer specialized in gold-coloured wood of the XVIIIth century, receives then a very urgent phone call: « Find me fast a surgeon to save a boy who has the lung crushed by a tumor. He cannot live and we cannot operate him here, I arrange for the visa », says to his niece, Virginia Legrand, volunteer of the humanitarian association Children of the Mekong.

Some days and thousand harassments later, Chay Lo is operated in the cardiological Centre of the North, in Saint-Denis. The professor Bernard Andreassian takes out of his lungs a tumor - not cancer patient - of 5 kilos. The days which he crosses between the life and the death seem endless to his good fairies. They organize finally his convalescence in France, in the family of the doctor Patricia Labourier, the French doctor who based the association “Help the Cambodian children”.

This pain in lungs, which tormented him coasts and back, Chay Lo supported it silently for years: in this family of 5 children, the care are out of reach. His mother brings up silkworms and weaves scarfs, his father runs 2 hectares of rice field. Nothing to feed everybody either, nor to study. Lo received from his father the same advice as all the poor children: « if you want to study, go to the pagoda. » Accommodated by a woman bigwig in the pagoda of Sisophon, he follows the classes with ease and makes a success his high school.

During his first one from feet to nose of the death, Chay Lo was 12 years old: “I kept the cows of my father and they crossed the river. I followed them. I did not know how to swim.” A friend saved him as he poured sheer. “It is what explains his panic fear of water”, tells his godmother, Mine Dumas, who accompanied him in sessions of swimming, to re-educate his lungs...

Brilliant, Chay Lo was allowed in most great school of the country, the Technological Institute of Cambodia (TIC), where he specialized in the management of the water. Taken out second, while a scholarship of the government allows only the first one to pursue studies abroad, he is again fished up. The network of his French friends helps him to continue his programme at the National School of the Rural Genius and the Waters and the Forests (ENGREF) in Paris and in Montpelier. His tenacity, his imagination and the other happy fates made the rest.

At her friend Virginia Legrand, he meets François Jaquenoud, a former partner of Andersen Consulting. All three evoke the muddy water of puddles and Cambodian rivers which the villagers are reduced to drink. Their bacteria kill children by thousands. “Is there no means to cleanse this water?”, asks Chay Lo. The father of Virginia, engineer, invented for a German family, which produces some goat's milk cheese in the Drôme, a system of filtration of the spring water by ultraviolet, fed by sun panels. But the device, which the small group leaves to observe on the spot, cannot be used as it is. Its adaptation will be the object of the report of the end of Chay Lo's study. “What he finalized, is a true progress in the treatment of the drinking water, with modules easy to realize and to run”, says, admiring, Gillian Cadic, teacher in ENGREF in Montpelier. “He has a lot of determination in his projects, but he is almost too discreet. He asked us absolutely nothing », he observes.

Nevertheless France has changed him, pushing aside his discretion and his reserve: “ in Cambodia, we do not speak, and not about oneself. We have a lot of respect for important and rich people. A lot of courage is needed to knock in their door”, he explains. He feels “more comfortable” since he came in France. “He began speaking since he made Waters and Forests. He writes things on him, now. But he never complained of whatever it is”, shows his godmother, who attended, moved, in her marriage last year in Cambodia. “I am extremely proud, because he took something to us, it is not to be allowed destabilize by the problems. It goes against a certain fatalism as we find in his country”, concludes Virginia Legrand.

The sweetness remains. “We do not say things frontally in Cambodia, one should not lose the face. In villages, Lo knows how to say things to the cambodian style, by way of a third person for example. He explains and re-explains patiently”, tells Marie Yen, a French ingénieure, a volunteer of “1001 fountains for tomorrow”, which comes back from one year stay in Cambodia. Today, the association settled 11 stations, among which each supplies the drinking water for 1 000 to 1 500 persons. A family becomes the installation's operator and the villagers buy the pure water for less than one penny of the dollar the liter. Chay Lo, by taking the reins of the project in Cambodia, refused much more tempting of the NGO's propositions better endowed, or big French companies. He collects 500 dollars a month. “He could make fortune, but he considers that, if he arrived there, it is that he was helped”, shows François Jaquenoud.

Since the childhood, it is convinced that he owes “to help poor people rather than to work that with the rich one.” Chay Lo asks: “if everybody is interested only in the big companies, who is going to help people in the rural zones?” A way of returning, with the smile, which was given to him.

Adrien de Tricornot

Posted by Khemara Jati
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