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Friday, November 03, 2017, 07:54 (GMT+7)
Tay Ninh Border Guard’s experience in controlling and preventing border “hot spots”

Tay Ninh, a Southwest border province located in the gateway to Cambodia and ASEAN Community, holds a position of importance in economic, cultural, social, defence, security and diplomatic fields. Therefore, building a border of friendship, stability, cooperation and development, and protecting border sovereignty and security, with a focus on managing and preventing border “hot spots”, is of importance and urgency.

Over the past years, to manage and prevent border “hot spots”, and create a peaceful, stable environment for economic development, Tay Ninh provincial party committee and authority, with the Provincial Border Guard (PBG for short) first, have closely worked with relevant forces and flexibly employed measures of border defence professional expertise to opportunely, effectively handle situations. As a result, the security and political situation in the border between Vietnam and Cambodia is always stable; cultural exchange activities have been expanded; border gate trade is under law; people’s living standards in border area increasingly improve; friendship relations between border localities have been strengthened, thereby creating a driving force for Tay Ninh and Cambodia’s border localities to realize goals of socioeconomic development and step up comprehensive reform.

The following are lessons drawn from the PBG’s management and prevention of border “hot spots” as well as its protection of border sovereignty and security.

1. Regularly perceiving and concretizing the Party’s guideline and the State’s policy and law on management and protection of border sovereignty and security, laying foundation for units’ implementation at levels. This is the basis for the PBG’s direction over border management and building as well as protection of border sovereignty and security. Grounded in the particularities of the area, border situation, requirements and tasks, the PGB Command has focused on grasping the Party and the State’s guideline and strategy on border and protection of border sovereignty and security, particularly on complex border issues, such as demarcation and landmark planting. The PGB Command has given advice to the Border Guard High Command, Military Region 7 High Command, the Provincial Party Committee and People’s Committee on guideline and projects to manage and protect national border in combination with socioeconomic development on a proper basis, while playing a core role in cooperating with units and localities in the implementation of the tasks. It has directed border posts, stations and positions to develop plans and solutions for managing and preventing “hot spots”, and to make those “relevant to subjects, areas, requirements, tasks as well as the Border Guard High Command and Party Central Committee’s guideline and strategy for protection of border sovereignty and security”.

However, the PGB is always confronted with hostile forces’ wicked acts of sabotage, particularly stepping up the establishment of illegal opposition parties commanding “hot spots” from Cambodia. Those opposition parties regularly gather forces for demonstrations in border areas, exploiting the issues of border and territory to allege that Vietnam occupies Cambodia’s territory and violates this country’s sovereignty, and that Royal Government of Cambodia sells lands to Vietnam, ostracizing, threatening and assaulting Vietnamese people in Cambodia. Those dangerous acts have slowed down the process of demarcation and undermined the solidarity, friendship relations between Vietnam and Cambodia, thereby leading to differences, national hatred, border and territory disputes between the two countries as well as risks of conflicts and instability in the region. Thus, a part from a firm grasp and concretization of the Party’s guideline and the State’s policy on management and prevention of “hot spots”, the PGB Command has placed emphasis on making cadres and troops steadfast in political willpower, guideline, policy and law, expert in professional knowledge of border defence, conversant with the area and border situation, resolute in prevention and combat, and flexible in settlement of situations. Moreover, the PGB Command has frequently introduced the viewpoint “composed, clever, resolute, persistent, not spontaneous, avoiding being trapped into the enemy’s ruses” and achieved the consistency in action from the PGB Command to each soldier. Simultaneously, it has closely combined propagation and education of law with education to raise citizens’ responsibility and obligation for protection of border sovereignty and security as well as the building of all-people border defence posture in association with all-people national defence posture and people’s security posture in border areas. Due attention has been paid to carrying out the work of special propagation, actively fighting against opportunists and degenerates among Border Guard cadres and troops, ensuring the strict, effective implementation of the Party’s guideline and the State’s policy and law on protection of border sovereignty and security.

2. Proactively studying and correctly anticipating the situation, proposing solutions to and effectively performing the task of managing and preventing border “hot spots”. Grasping the situation in all aspects provides scientific ground for the PGB Command to indentify “the Determination to protect border sovereignty and security”, and design plans and projects to fight and prevent “hot spots” on a proper and effective basis. The PGB Command has proactively counselled the Provincial Party Committee and People’s Committee, the Border Guard High Command and the Military Region 7 High Command to adopt uniform measures for leadership and direction over the implementation of this important task. It has identified the general direction over protection of border sovereignty and security: “closely combining political, legal, diplomatic struggle with field struggle, regarding education, persuasion and prevention as the main solution, avoiding “hot spots” in the border area”. To this end, the PGB Command has brought into play both the strength of “all-people border defence movement” and PGB Reconnaissance Force’s proactiveness, flexibility and creativity. The task of reconnaissance has been conducted comprehensively to grasp the political and ideological situation of the people from the two countries as well as economic, cultural, social, defence and security situation, particularly in the realm of border security, with emphasis placed on the areas of complex security and politics (such as Chau Thanh and Tan Thanh districts), and the places being potentially transformed into “hot spots”. Concerning opposition organizations and parties, the PGB Command has directed forces to grasp their goals, schemes, timing, places, forces, means and method of operation, especially their unusual signs and moves. Agencies and units of the PGB have diversified forms and methods of reconnaissance to grasp the situation, and taken advantage of information provided by the people and higher echelons, while attaching importance to collecting, screening and processing information and anticipating the situation. The PGB Command has requested that collected information must be “comprehensive, focalized, accurate, timely, reliable”. To this end, the PGB Command has closely worked with military intelligence and reconnaissance forces of the Provincial Military Command, Military Region 7, Provincial Department of Public Security and other relevant units stationed in the area to exchange, verify and sort out information, consider and assess the situation, and anticipate potential situations. It has also counselled the Provincial Party Committee and People’s Committee to supplement and complete the determination and plans for combating, preventing and settling new situations, while directing its posts, stations and positions to organize force and flexibly employ specialized measures to quickly nip their conspiracy in the bud. In recent years, thanks to a firm grasp of the situation, the PGB has prevented and opportunely dealt with various disturbances, demonstrations and violations of border sovereignty, i.e. the “hot spot” taking place at the landmark 147-148 on May 15th 2014, thereby contributing to building a border of peace, friendship, cooperation and co-development.

3. Enhancing the effectiveness of border defence diplomacy to control and prevent “hot spots”. The PGB Command considers this as an important solution aimed at thwarting hostile forces’ sabotage plots, preventing differences, and repelling the risks of territory dispute between the two countries. To this end, the PGB Command has thoroughly perceived the guideline on external affairs, laid down by the Party and the Central Military Commission, flexibly applying it to the work of border defence diplomacy at all levels. Agencies and units of the PGB always keep a close eye on the situation of the province and three border provinces of Cambodia, namely Tboung Khmum, Prey Veng, Svay Rieng, bringing into play the traditional relations between border localities of Vietnam and Cambodia as well as the friendship relations between the two States, continuing to strengthen and develop the relations to a new height to meet the requirements set by international integration process today. Units and agencies of the PGB have proactively drawn up plans and programs for exchange and cooperation in various areas, such as experience exchange and provision of information, particularly information related to seeds of border “hot spots”. Great significance has been attached to stepping up defence and security cooperation, especially on border security, via regular dialogues and contingency conferences between local authorities and units of the Border Guard, Police and Military from the two countries with a view to evaluating the results of cooperation and setting up solutions to sensitive, new issues. Joint patrols and cross-border crime prevention and combat have been intensified. The PGB Command and its affiliates have laid stress on grasping and implementing Vietnam’s viewpoint on the basis of the country’s law, international law and norms as well as agreements and conventions signed by the two countries; while maintaining vigilance against hostile forces’ exploitation of integration process and cooperation to serve their evil political goals and damage national benefits.

Senior Colonel Le Hong Vuong, Commander of Tay Ninh Provincial Border Guard

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