US Concerned About China's Intent to Build Naval Facility in Cambodia - State Dept.
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The United States is concerned about China's intentions and seeks transparency about its new naval facility project in Cambodia, State Department spokesman Ned Price said on Monday.
The Washington Post reported earlier in the day, citing Western officials, that China is secretly building a naval facility near Cambodia's Ream Naval Base on the Gulf of Thailand that will be exclusively used for military operations.
"We've seen from the PRC [China] that the PRC is engaged in a significant ongoing construction project at Ream Naval Base," Price said during a press briefing. "As we said, an exclusive PRC military presence at Ream could threaten Cambodia's autonomy and undermine regional security as well."
The United States and other countries in the region have expressed concerns about the lack of transparency on China's intent with this project, including the role China's military is playing in its construction, and its post-construction use of the facility, Price said.
A Chinese official confirmed to The Washington Post that only a portion of the new naval facility will be used by the Chinese military and denied that it is exclusively for military use, scientists will use it as well. The groundbreaking ceremony for the new naval facility will take place on Thursday, the report said.
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