Public Lecture: Democratic Kampuchea's Foreign Policy: A Leftover from the Chinese Cultural Revolution

Cambodian Institute for Cooperation and Peace

The Cambodian Institute for Cooperation and Peace will host the next Public Lecture on the topic "Democratic Kampuchea's Foreign Policy: A Leftover from the Chinese Cultural Revolution", supported by Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung Cambodia.


The topic of this Public Lecture was first brought to Ambassador Jeldres’ attention as he gathered documents for his Doctoral thesis on Norodom Sihanouk and the formulation of Cambodia’s Foreign Policy, which originally would cover the period from 1954 to 2004; the latter being of course the year of the second abdication to the throne by His Late Majesty the King Father.

Unfortunately, his supervisors at Monash University felt that his thesis was too long and cut it to end in 1976, the first year of the Khmers Rouges’ rule. He was therefore left with a wealth of declassified diplomatic reports, intelligence reports and other materials, which showed the great influence of the so-called “Gang of Four”, the principal ideologues that the Chinese Cultural Revolution had in the shaping not only of the Democratic Kampuchea Constitution but also its foreign policies. It is this research that he would like to share in this Lecture.

About the distinguished Speaker

Ambassador Julio A. Jeldres was born in Santiago de Chile. He became interested in Cambodia’s contemporary history in 1967, following the visit of Jacqueline Kennedy to Cambodia. He began a correspondence and long-standing friendship with His Late Majesty King Norodom Sihanouk in late 1967. He served as Deputy Chief of Cabinet, Chief of the Private Secretariat and Special Assistant to His Late Majesty from 1981 to 1991 and as Official Biographer since 1993. He holds a PhD in history from Monash University (2015) and is author of several books, chapters of books and research papers on Cambodia’s external relations, politics, the monarchy, the Royal Family and the late King Father.

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Saroeun Mom

Senior Programme Manager