Selected Comments Samdech Techo Hun Sen at the Tree-Planting Ceremony in the Royal Academy of Cambodia’s Park (RAC) at Russei Treb, Preah Vihear Province [Unofficial Translation]

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Cow-for-Milk Project

First of all please allow me to welcome excellencies, ladies, gentlemen, especially our compatriots for their presences today. I could remember coming here in 2016, after the Khmer New Year, toward end of April. I came across the district of Chheb to  put into operation a sugar factory. It is now two years after that I came here again and this time to do something for the works of conservation and development […] let me start by calling on people to take part in this project of raising cow for milk, which we launched here for the purpose of conserving and researching. I am confident that some of you would want to take part and make contributions in providing cows for milk to the project. My family and I, not on behalf of the Royal Government, contribute a sum of 100,000 USD for this project. Everyone, those who are here too, could think of donating one or two cows, or more, for this brilliant project […]

Iron Industry Not New in the Kingdom’s History

We have had the knowledge that iron industry prevailed in the Kingdom of Cambodia a long time ago. It is not a new thing. We must continue to conduct a study and research to find out, conserve and further study our history on this issue. We must look into other related factors such as use of metal in utensils, weapons, cultivations tools, and temple structures. We consider this area an historical place among many others which will tell us of our long history […]

It was in this concept that there was this proposal to set this area as a conservative park for RAC’s research. From the time I offered my approval, it is now four years and according to the report by Academician Sok Touch there are yet many problems to solve to ensure a transformation from left-out to conservative area. We have put in place various basic things, for example settlement of overlapping areas between those of RAC’s Park and those of the sugar factory. I mentioned on various occasion that this can happen when mapping is done in Phnom Penh […]

Building Roads for Defense and Protection of Forest from Logging, and Animals

We have clear boundary now. I agree with requests of Academician Sok Touch, President of RAC, on issues relating to building a road system, and I have asked General Kheng Someth to work it out with RAC on its master plan. It will not be a national road. We need to make sure it is a road specially built for the need of conservative areas to protect endangered animals and forest from logging […] not only we will protect these trees and forest but make sure they will grow useful for younger generation of our people, and as shelters for other endangered species animals losing their shelters elsewhere to stay. Some are almost extinct while more claiming of forest lands for cultivation is on the rise. It certainly infringes upon animal sanctuaries. It is in this concept that though how small this RAC’s Park is, it is working along the trends carried out together by the Ministries of Environment, and Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. It would not be suffice to talk about defending it on paper. We need to have actions, and we must do it together, to keep safe heritages left by generations of our ancestors.

RAC’s Park – Techo Sen Russei Treb – A Future Tourist Site

I am proud that we have pooled together to set up this important project. Though it may not be of interest to some people now, in five or ten years from now, I am sure it will become an attractive tourist site. By then, we may have more hotels in Preah Vihear. There is this type of tourists that are interested in traveling in the forests to watch live animals at night, etc. […] we have taken one very big step now but we still have to bring this interest to community, researchers, and target tourists groups. We are doing everything today for the benefits of our next generations. Historically, generations of early 1970s caused war of destructions to the country and the regime of Pol Pot from 1975 to 1979 […] now it is the time for us to work for our generation and for the generations to come […]

No More Economic Land Concessions

I have declared it last time at the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. It was since 2012. (The Royal Government) no longer offer economic land concession to companies. Those lands confiscated will be kept for social land concession to respond to our people’s demand for land. On this point, I advise the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, especially the local authorities, who are heading provincial land surveys affairs, to inspect and define which areas are for forest coverage that deserves protection and which are to be given out as social land concessions to our people for cultivation purpose.

… We are in the process of transforming our developing model from extensive to intensive. In the past, if five people needed land of two hectares to survive on, when the same family size goes to ten members, they may need four or five hectares. If we continue this practice, forest will be depleted from Cambodia. We must change our development method to a more intensive one by which from one hectare of land, we can feed ten or twenty people thanks to higher yield and effective cultivating technology. Only by doing so that we would be able to reduce impacts from claiming lands by land-needed people […] some have in fact been cutting down forest to claim land for the rich and the powerful who in return pay them […]

Special Decree/Sub-decree Consistent with Law for RAC’s Park Techo Sen Russei Treb

… We still have a lot to do. I support the six concepts laid down by RAC and pronounced by Academician Sok Touch. I wish to see all six of them in real successes. I agree to the idea of starting to organize this area according to the project without waiting for law. We already have (related) laws. All we need now is to organize internal regulation. I think RAC should be seeing this matter in cooperation with the Ministry of Environment. There must be a regulation specially designed for it. We could call for internal regulation, with legal tool as a decree or a sub-decree for the management of this park. However, the regulation has to be in consistence with existing laws, as it may serve the purpose of research and development […]

Ending War, Building Infrastructures … Come Illegal Loggings

… Should there be anything at all to reproach, people may do so to me. It could be correct. Why? I was the one to end the war, and to build the roads and bridges. It was because I did all those that some have had chances to go logging illegally. Finally, mistakes return to me. What should I do? If I let the war to go on, people would continue to bleed and die every day. When we put out the war, a new problem arises. In war, fighting caused injuries and deaths. In absence of war, people cut forest and claimed land for cultivation, and for better infrastructures […]

Took Life Risks for People’s Peaceful Life

I just wanted our people to think about it how many correct points have Techo led the country, and how many incorrect points he did. Ending a war was not that simple. I traded my life to liberate the people from the (genocidal) regime of Pol Pot. At a later stage, I betted my life again to go into the Khmer Rouge-held territory for purpose of integrating the country […] what other leaders may have done in their countries would be a different matter but what I did here was courage and sacrifice for the people’s peaceful life […]

… I came last time on National Road 9 to Preah Vihear and continued my way through the district of Rovieng. I approved spending of over ten million USD for investment in education in the form of school building of two and three floors. We need to focus on human resource investment. Without infrastructure, Academician Sok Touch would not have an easy traveling time. (Now that you are here), traveling back, you may go to Kompong Thom, or through Stoeng Treng by national road 9. With that much I have been doing, people may think who would do more than I did. Would they say it was wrong for me to make peace, to develop the country and to offer land to the people. I think and I am sure that people will be able to judge […] I hope there will be sufficient rain or if there were not, we should also irrigate them. Please take care of every tree we planted here including the one I just did as a symbol of commencing this project of RAC’s Park Techo Sen Russei Treb […]./.