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" Killing fields of Cambodia, not the only injustice for Cambodian victims only; but, it's for the whole humanity." A survivor

Archive for November 2012

Myanmar vows to fight corruption effectively

YANGON, Nov. 30 (Xinhua) — The Myanmar government Friday vowed to fight corruption effectively, warning that corruption is an unacceptable and unpardonable misconduct in building a disciplined democratic nation and affects the dignity of the nation and the people.

In a statement on anti-corruption issued on Friday, the Home Ministry said the government is rewriting a new bill to replace the existing Suppression of Corruption Act 1948 to meet the demand of the present time and international norms.

The statement invites citizens to openly complain about bribery cases to the Bureau of Special Investigation and the Head Office of the Home Ministry.

The statement pointed out that the culture of demanding for bribes in the form of cash gifts still exists in the government departments and private enterprises as well as in interaction between government staff and departments.

It called for public participation in the elimination of bribery and corruption to ensure good governance and clean government.

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Written by Kham

30/11/2012 at 8:18 pm

Cambodian, Vietnamese militaries ink deals for quarry, rubber development projects

PHNOM PENH, Nov. 30 (Xinhua) — Cambodian and Vietnamese Defense Ministries on Friday signed two documents relevant to a joint venture for establishing a quarry and a rubber plantation project in Cambodia.

According to a document briefed to reporters at the signing ceremony, the two deals included a quarry site establishment in Kampong Chhnang province, in which Vietnamese side will be responsible for the investment cost, and a memorandum of understanding on a feasibility study for a 6,000 hectare rubber plantation in Cambodia.

For the rubber project, at the initial phase, both sides will start to plant rubber seedlings on an area of 220 hectares.

The documents were signed between Lt. Gen. Ouk Korsa, head of Cambodian Defense Ministry’s development department, and Gen. Tran Trung Tin, head of Vietnamese Defense Ministry’s finance department and military business association. “All investment projects by the two armies have complied with the two countries’ investment laws,”said Ouk Korsa ahead of the signing ceremony.

Gen. Tran Trung Tin arrived in Cambodia on Wednesday for a three-day visit. On Thursday, he met with Cambodian Secretary of State for Defense Gen. Moeung Samphan, and the two sides agreed to further strengthen and expand military ties through capacity building and technical assistance.

EC to probe Abhisit’s qualifications…Abhisit dodged military duty

28-11-2012 (Bangkokpost) The Election Commission will set up a subcommittee to investigate whether Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva still qualifies to serve as an MP after being stripped of his military rank following allegations he dodged the draft many years ago, EC secretary-general Puchong Nutrawong said on Wednesday.

The EC’s action was in response to a petition by former senator Ruangkrai Leekijwattana, who said Mr Abhisit might be no longer qualify as an MP because he had been dismissed from military service.

Mr Abhisit was accused of using falsified documents to apply for a teaching job at the Chulachomklao Royal Military Academy. He was subsequently exempted from military conscription. He did serve as a teacher.

Mr Puchong said the subcommittee was initially given 30 days to invite all concerned, including Mr Abhisit and Defence Minister Sukumpol Suwanatat, in for questioning. However, the timeframe could be extended.

If in the end the EC ruled that Mr Abhisit was no longer qualified to serve as an MP, the case would be forwarded to the House speaker, who was empowered to seek a final ruling from the Constitution Court.

Written by Kham

28/11/2012 at 8:33 pm

Cambodia greets 2.86 mln foreign visitors in 10 months

PHNOM PENH, Nov. 28 (Xinhua) — Cambodia attracted approximately 2.86 million international tourists in the first ten months of this year, up 24 percent over the same period last year, a report of the tourism ministry showed Wednesday.

The report said Vietnam remains the largest source of foreign visitors to Cambodia with 638,560 tourists, up 24 percent, followed by South Korea with 337,700 visitors, up 23 percent, and China with 265,330, up 34 percent.

Its neighboring countries, Laos and Thailand were ranked at No. 4 and 5 respectively with 201,250 Laotians and 160,030 Thais visiting Cambodia, up 90 percent and 75 percent respectively.

The country has two world heritage sites, one is Angkor Wat Temple in Siem Reap province and the other is Preah Vihear Temple in Preah Vihear province.

The report showed that during the January-October period this year, about 1.64 million foreign visitors had visited Angkor Wat Temple, up 28 percent over the same period last year, whilst Preah Vihear Temple attracted 14,360 foreigners, up 84 percent.

The ministry predicted that the country could attract about 3.3 million foreign tourists in the whole year of 2012.

Tourism is one of the major four pillars supporting the economy. Last year, the sector received 2.88 million foreign tourists, earning revenues of 1.91 billion U.S. dollars.

Meanwhile, the report also recorded that during the first ten months of this year, about 656,240 Cambodians had travelled abroad, up 14 percent compared with the same period last year.

ASEAN meeting addressing violence against women held in Manila

MANILA, Nov. 27 (Xinhua) — A three-day workshop to address the growing phenomenon of violence against women in ASEAN countries began on Tuesday in the Philippines, a senior government official said here.

The Training Workshop on Strengthening Capacities of Communities, Practitioners and Policy Makers to Address Violence Against Women (VAW) is part of Philippines’ Department of Social Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) commitment to advance the goals of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on November 25, Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Soliman said.

“The workshop hopes to identify common approaches that service providers and practitioners can adapt to effectively address violence against women in the Asian region,” she said.

The event is being participated by social workers, law enforcement officers and non-government organizations (NGOs) involved in managing cases of victims-survivors of violence against women, from the ten ASEAN member-states.

The gathering aims to provide a venue for participating countries to share their initiatives, strategies, gains, challenges, and recommendations on strengthening capacities of communities, practitioners and policy makers in addressing VAW focusing on victims-survivors, perpetrators, and enabling mechanisms, Soliman said.

“This time, we need to focus on the service providers and stakeholders, particularly on strengthening the capacities of communities, practitioners and policy makers as the next step to eliminate violence against women. We are looking forward to a fruitful sharing of ideas and strategies that will effectively eliminate this social malady in the Asian region,” she said.

SKorea: US socialite to lose honorary consul title…Jill who manipulated head spy

Jill Kelley is a lot hotter than kimchi for S Korean to handle

26-11-2012 SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea will revoke an honorary title given to an American socialite tied to a scandal involving former CIA director David Petraeus, officials said Tuesday.

Jill Kelley, the Tampa, Florida, socialite, misused her title as South Korean honorary consul by raising it in unspecified personal business dealings, a Foreign Ministry official in Seoul said. The official, who declined to be named because the matter is still being discussed, wouldn’t elaborate and said it’s not clear when the title will be revoked.

Deputy Foreign Minister Kim Kyou-hyun told South Korean reporters during a visit to Washington that Kelley inappropriately used her title for personal gain.

“It’s not suitable to the status of honorary consul that (she) sought to be involved in commercial projects and peddle influence,” Kim said, according to Yonhap news agency.

Kelley, 37, unraveled the scandal involving Petraeus that emerged in early November.

Kelley — who lives in a waterfront mansion along one of Tampa’s toniest streets — had complained to an FBI agent that she had received threatening emails telling her to stay away from Petraeus, who once commanded Central Command at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa. Petraeus got to know Kelley through parties and events around Tampa.

Agents tracked the emails to Petraeus biographer Paula Broadwell, who was having an affair with the former general.

During the investigation, officials also discovered that Kelley had exchanged numerous emails with Gen. John Allen when he was in charge of Central Command. The Pentagon is investigating potentially “inappropriate” correspondence between Kelley and the four-star general who is the top U.S. and NATO commander of the war in Afghanistan.

As the scandal unfolded, so did details about Kelley’s life. Accounts of lavish parties at her mansion with politicians and military generals were replaced by reports of her family’s financial woes.

Her position as an honorary consul to South Korea was also revealed, as were her efforts to broker business deals on behalf of the country.

A New York businessman said Kelley was introduced to him at the Republican National Convention in Tampa in August as someone whose friendship with Petraeus would help facilitate a no-bid deal with South Korea on a coal-gasification project. She would supposedly be in a position to help broker the billion-dollar deal directly with the Korean president, and expected a 2 percent commission, said Adam Victor, president and chief executive officer of TransGas Development Systems.

She also tried to establish a relationship between South Korea and the University of South Florida’s medical school.

A senior South Korean Foreign Ministry official who handles consulate affairs in the United States said honorary consuls don’t have diplomatic immunity, and that the ministry applies much less strict rules in appointing them than it does for potential government officials.

In the past, a U.S. citizen who adopted a South Korean child and a businessman with strong links to South Korea had been named honorary consuls, he said. The ministry pays $2,500 a year to each of the 15 current honorary consuls in the United States. The official said the ministry has been considering increasing the number because it has been thought to be a cost-effective way to promote South Korea in the United States.

The official wouldn’t give his name because of office rules that prohibit being quoted in the press.

The South Korean official who made it possible for Jill Kelley to be appointed honorary consul was Han Duk-soo, currently head of the Korea International Trade Association (KITA) and South Korean ambassador to the United States until February.

Just before leaving the United States, he asked the South Korean consulate office in Atlanta to consider appointing Kelley honorary consul, citing her active role in organizing public events promoting an ambitious, hard-fought free trade agreement between Seoul and Washington and in arranging meetings between the ambassador and influential politicians and businessmen in Tampa, according to a KITA official who said he spoke to Han about Kelley.

The KITA official, who refused to allow an interview with Han, said his boss is troubled by the fact that he has been involved in the scandal. The official refused to give his name because he said office rules prohibit it. It wasn’t clear how or why the Embassy initially contacted Kelley about organizing free trade events.

The official categorically denied that there was any inappropriate relationship between Han and Kelley. He said Kelley showed Han in their meetings a strong willingness to work for the improvement of U.S.-South Korean economic relations. He didn’t elaborate.

___

Lush reported from Tampa, Florida.

Written by Kham

28/11/2012 at 7:56 pm

New Zealand Premier Announces New Pledge during Visit to ECCC

AKP Phnom Penh, November 21, 2012 —

Prime Minister H.E. John Key of New Zealand announced today a new pledge of NZ$200,000 (about more than US$160,000) to the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) while visiting the court to gain insight into the work of the tribunal, said an ECCC’s press release.

The premier led an eight-member delegation to the court at the end of his official visit to Cambodia to attend the East Asia Summit, said the press release, stressing that it was the first time the ECCC welcomed a head of government to the court.

The announcement of the new pledge came when the premier held a meeting with Acting Director Tony Kranh and Deputy Director Knut Rosandhaug, it added.

“New Zealand will continue to help the tribunal complete its work prosecuting the senior leaders of the Khmer Rouge,” said H.E. John Key.

Following the courtesy meeting, the premier and his delegation met with Trial Chamber President Nil Nonn and Judge Silvia Cartwright from New Zealand and toured the courtroom.

“We would like to express our sincere appreciation to the Government of New Zealand for its continued support to the court,” said Mr. Kranh and Mr. Rosandhaug.

New Zealand has supported the court since 2006 and contributed NZ$1 million so far. The new pledge will bring the total contribution to NZ$1.2 million (nearly US$1 million).