Cambodia, Singapore to ‘move on’ from Lee remarks storm

Cambodia, Singapore and Vietnam have agreed to move on from the controversy caused by remarks from Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and follow the path of cooperation, dialogue and friendship.

The foreign ministers of the three countries had separate telephone conversations on Friday after Lee’s comments questioning the legitimacy of Cambodia’s first post-Khmer Rouge government drew ire from the Kingdom and Vietnam over the past week.

On May 31, Lee took to Facebook to express his condolences on the passing of former general Prem Tinsulanonda, who was Thai prime minister from 1980 to 1988.

“Thailand was on the frontline, facing Vietnamese forces across its border with Cambodia. General Prem was resolute in not accepting this fait accompli and worked with Asean partners to oppose the Vietnamese occupation in international forums."

“This prevented the military invasion and regime change from being legitimised. It protected the security of other Southeast Asian countries, and decisively shaped the course of the region,” Lee said.

On Friday, the three foreign ministers talked separately on the phone agreeing to move on from the controversy, one born of different historical perspectives, strengthen relations and cooperation and “leave the past behind”.

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