Sunday, 5 July 2009

First Khmer Rouge Survivor Takes the Stand


More than 30 years after the Khmer Rouge ruled Cambodia, a showdown between a survivor and torturer has taken place in this Phnom Penh courtroom.

The testimony of Vann Nath was highly anticipated as the well known Cambodian artist became the first prison survivor to testify in the trial of Pol Pot's top torturer.

In graphic detail, he described the experience as "hell".

[Vann Nath, S-21 Survivor]:

"When there were insects falling from the lamp, I collected them and ate them. When the security guards saw this, they asked, 'What are you eating?' So they hit me until I spit out the grasshopper or cricket from my mouth."

The man accused of the crimes listened as the testimony continued.

[Vann Nath, S-21 Survivor]:
"When I didn't shower for such a long time, there were lice on my body and head. I scratched everywhere. So my life was like an evil animal."

More than 14,000 people died at the notorious S-21 detention center, a converted high school in the center of Phnom Penh.

Nath says he survived only because chief torturer Duch liked his paintings of Pol Pot.

Duch has admitted his part in the deaths but maintains he was only following orders.

With no death penalty in Cambodia, he faces a maximum sentence of life in prison.

But Nath says he wanted to speak about the horrors of the regime in an effort to seek justice for all those who died at their hands ... and will remain forever silent.

DHL Arrival at Hope for Cambodian Children Centre


Box after box of toys, books, baby prams, medical equipment, clothes, books and more books.
Read more: www.hopeforcambodianchildren.o rg/news/dhl.html

Cambodian mine specialists go to Sudan

Royal Cambodian Army at Preah Vihear

Unesco: Cambodia is the sole owner of Preah Vihear temple

Deputy PM Sok An talking to reporters.

Source: Deum Ampil newspaper
Reported in English by Khmerization

Unesco has shown its stance by reiterating again that Cambodia is the sole owner of Preah Vihear temple, while rejecting the Thai proposal for a joint registration of the temple between Cambodia and Thailand, reports Deum Ampil.

During a press conference at Phnom Penh Airport upon his return from a Unesco conference in Seville, Spain on Sunday morning the 5th of July, Cambodian Deputy PM Sok An reiterates his firm stance against the Thai proposal for a joint registration of the temple. He said: "I am still objecting to the Thai proposal for a joint registration of Preah Vihear temple with Thailand in the Unesco's World Heritage List."

The Deputy PM said Cambodian delegation had made an excellent video presentation to the other delegates during the conference in Spain. He said: "During the Unesco conference in Seville, Spain, Cambodia has made a presentation by showing a video of the armed clashes between Cambodian and Thai troops in the past."

According to Deum Ampil, an unnamed Unesco official said the pictures seen in the video shown clearly that crimes have been committed. The unnamed Unesco official also said that he absolutely supports the notion that Cambodia is the sole owner of Preah Vihear temple.

The unnamed official also urged the Cambodian government to continue to show the video of the armed clashes to the Cambodian population so that the Cambodian people can be informed of what actually had happened during the armed clashes.

Thai troops invaded the areas surrounding Preah Vihear temple on 15th July 2008, one week after it was inscribed by Unesco on 7th July. Since then two armed clashes had erupted between Cambodian and Thai troops, one on 15th October 2008 and another on 3rd April 2009 during which the temple suffered some damages, caused by Thai shells.

Ban Ki-moon speaks in Burma


The UN Secretary-General urges Myanmar's ruling military junta to release all political prisoners and lay the ground work for an election next year. .. Follow us on twitter at

Scant results for Ban in Burma

Mr Ban (right) met Burma's military leader twice

By Laura Trevelyan
BBC News, Bangkok

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has just returned from Burma, where the ruling general, Than Shwe, refused to allow him to meet jailed opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

Not until last Sunday did Ban Ki-moon finally decide to accept this Mission Impossible, visiting Burma just as Ms Suu Kyi's trial was scheduled to resume.

Mr Ban and his aides carefully weighed up whether to go or not.

US officials warned Mr Ban privately that he could be used by the generals to endorse their treatment of Ms Suu Kyi, a concern forcefully stated by Human Rights Watch.

France was lukewarm. Britain, the most gung-ho of the major powers at the UN on this topic, suggested Mr Ban see if he could visit later in July.

Russia and China were supportive of the visit so the UN Security Council, unhelpfully but typically, was split.

Some UN officials were concerned that Mr Ban might repeat the experience of his recent trip to Sri Lanka, in the immediate aftermath of the government's victory over the Tamil Tigers.

There the government seemed to be using Mr Ban's visit to endorse their position, seeing him as a figure to be taken on a victory lap of the conflict zone.

He visited government-run camps for displaced Tamils but his attempt to improve conditions there had to compete with the government's insistence that all was well.

Elusive 'deliverables'

On the plus side, UN officials hoped the rapport built up between Mr Ban and Gen Than Shwe in the aftermath of Cyclone Nargis last year might help produce something.

Mr Ban played a pivotal role in persuading Than Shwe to allow international aid workers into the worst-affected areas of the flooded delta region.

However the "deliverables", as diplomats call the possible results of meetings, remained annoyingly elusive.

UN officials hoped the Burmese generals might decide to release some of the 2,100 political prisoners in the country, and possibly allow Mr Ban to see Aung San Suu Kyi. But it was all up in the air.

Mr Ban met Than Shwe for nearly two hours on Friday, in the pristine new capital of Nay Pyi Taw, where they discussed political prisoners and the trial of Ms Suu Kyi.

Mr Ban asked to see her and the generals stalled.

On Saturday morning, another half-hour meeting, and Than Shwe told Mr Ban that he could not see the opposition leader.

The ostensible reason was that she was on trial for failing to observe her house arrest.

At that point it also became clear that no immediate releases of political prisoner were on the cards.

Even before Mr Ban had left Burma, his visit was being criticised.

Don McKinnon, the former secretary general of the Commonwealth, told the BBC going home empty-handed was bad for the UN and bad news for Mr Ban. He suggested the secretary general had been badly advised.

One senior UN official expressed frustration with the argument that visiting rogue governments legitimised their image: "The SG can't talk to questionable regimes without someone saying you're putting the nice label on them."

The generals' assurances

So what did Mr Ban achieve?

The generals have assured him they will conduct free, fair and transparent elections next year.

These will be the first elections for 20 years, since Ms Suu Kyi's party won and the generals annulled the result.

The generals' roadmap to what they call disciplined democracy has been widely criticised for underscoring their grip on power.

A quarter of the seats in the new parliament building which I saw under construction in the capital will go to the army.

Given what happened in 1990, assurances about the conduct of an election have to be carefully monitored.

Than Shwe did tell Mr Ban that when he came next, the generals would be ordinary citizens, because the handover of power to a civilian government would have taken place.

Some analysts say Than Shwe is genuinely thinking about the succession and how to hand over power, and Mr Ban could be the person to help bring Than Shwe and Ms Suu Kyi together.

The generals are seriously considering whether to release political prisoners before the election, reported Mr Ban. Another one to watch, but will they?

Senior UN officials say the secretary general did speak truth to power, both when he met Than Shwe and when he delivered a speech in Rangoon's drug elimination museum in public.

He laid it on the line, said one source, and told them what is required of them for international respectability.

Western diplomats say Mr Ban has kept the spotlight on the situation in Burma and this is a process which has some way to go.

The worry is that a UN process is exactly what the generals want, since they can look as though they are engaging with the outside world while actually doing very little.

Tensionsput aside as new road opens

Published: 5/07/2009

Tensions between Thailand and Cambodia could ease as friendly feelings were recalled yesterday in a joint ceremony opening a new road linking the two countries, said Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva.

Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban and Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen together inaugurated the 131km road running from the Sa-ngam border pass in Si Sa Ket's Phu Sing district to Anlong Veng and Siem Reap in Cambodia.

Thailand hopes the route will boost tourism for the northeastern province as it is a new link to the home of Angkor Wat in Siem Reap.

The road opening was a good opportunity to "correct some misunderstandings and work for a better atmosphere", said Mr Abhisit.

Mr Suthep and the Cambodian leader met for the second time in two weeks. On June 27 he met Mr Hun Sen at his home near Phnom Penh to mend fences after Thailand's protest to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation about Cambodia's unilateral bid to register Preah Vihear temple as a World Heritage site.

Thailand objected before Unesco's World Heritage Committee in Spain late last month, arguing that Thailand should have been party to the registration process as well.

Troops from the two countries have clashed over overlapping areas surrounding the temple, which has yet to be demarcated.

The Cambodian government was upset about the Thai decision to renew protest action, leading to renewed border tensions.

Mr Suthep did not raise the Preah Vihear issue during the opening ceremony yesterday. He said the atmosphere was good, especially when Mr Hun Sen thanked Thailand for building the road.

"He told people the two countries have good relations and are friends," Mr Suthep said.

Defence Minister Prawit Wongsuwon said on Friday that talks with Cambodia were necessary if Thailand wanted to cut troop numbers at the border with Cambodia, to lessen tensions.

"I guarantee [this time] there will not be a fight between Thailand and Cambodia," Gen Prawit said.

Local Rotary gets $300,000 grant for Cambodia project

By Christopher Curry
Staff writer

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Since 2005, the Rotary Club of Gainesville and locally run nonprofit organization Sustainable Cambodia have worked together to improve the quality of life in impoverished villages of rural central Cambodia's Pursat province.

They have established a school for children, funded the construction of wells for clean drinking water supplies and crop irrigation and helped bolster the area's sustainable food supply of with gardens and the donation of livestock to village families.

But their past ventures together have never had the one-time infusion of funds the groups just received — a $300,000 grant from Rotary International.

Richard Allen, the president and co-founder of Sustainable Cambodia and a member of the Rotary Club of Gainesville, said the majority of the money will go toward additional water wells in the dry region, where drought lasts some five months a year.

Drinking supplies, crops and the survvial of livestock all depend on those wells, Allen said.

"Water, over there, is the linchpin of everything that takes place," Allen said.

To date, Sustainable Cambodia has funded more than 100 water wells in the Pursat province. The grant money will fund 80 additional wells and 8,000 water filters to supply clean water to the region.

It will also fund construction of 800 new latrines, 20 community ponds for farming fish, raised gardens able to withstand floods, and road repairs in the Pursat's Kravanh district, according to a press release from the Rotary Club of Gainesville.

In addition to the infrastructure projects in Cambodia, the Gainesville groups have helped establish a partner organization in Cambodia — the Rotary Club of Pursat.

Elena Casson, chair of the Rotary Club of Gainesville's Cambodia committee, said that, working with the club in Cambodia, planning has already started on the projects the grant will fund so construction work will be able to begin by the end of the year.

The Rotary Club of Gainesville was one of 15 worldwide recipients of the rotary International grant. The local group had to pledge $30,000 in matching funds.

Contact Christopher Curry at 374-5088 or

Myanmar denies UN chief a meeting

The Tehran Times Daily Newspaper

NAYPYIDAW, Myanmar (The New York Times) — Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations secretary general, said Saturday that his request to see the democracy leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi had been rejected by the country’s ruling generals.

Mr. Ban said he had asked the generals to free their many political prisoners, including Mrs. Aung San Suu Kyi, but there was no sign yet of movement on the issue from the junta. He said Friday that the military leaders reminded him that Mrs. Aung San Suu Kyi was on trial.

Mr. Ban is hoping to win the release of political prisoners — estimated at 2,100 by international humanitarian organizations — ahead of elections scheduled for 2010.

Mr. Ban’s rare meeting with Senior Gen. Than Shwe and the other four generals who constitute the ruling State Peace and Development Council came as the government declared a one-week pause in Mrs. Aung San Suu Kyi’s trial.

Mr. Ban called his exchange with the generals “frank,” and a senior United Nations official described the discussion as “forceful” on both sides.

Mr. Ban said he told the generals it would be important to release Mrs. Aung San Suu Kyi and the other political prisoners to ensure the broadest possible participation in the election.

“This election should be a credible, fair, inclusive and legitimate one where all the Myanmar people can express their will in a free way,” Mr. Ban said after meeting with the generals. “I was assured that Myanmar’s authorities will make sure that this election will be held in fair and free and transparent manner.”

At the same time, Mr. Ban asked for a series of steps toward that goal, though it was unclear whether the military government would endorse such a development, senior United Nations official said. The steps include revamping the election laws publicly and establishing an electoral commission. Not even the aborted election of 1990, which Mrs. Aung San Suu Kyi’s party won, truly covered the whole nation, so another step would be allowing the party, the National League for Democracy, to open offices across the country and to permit her to campaign.

Mr. Ban said he also urged the generals to resume their dialogue with the opposition in a substantive and meaningful way, including with Mrs. Aung San Suu Kyi.

Mr. Ban is expected to have an additional, unscheduled meeting with General Than Shwe and is due to make a speech about the country’s future to a group of nongovernmental organizations involved in relief efforts for the past 14 months. He also plans to tour the Irrawaddy Delta, where Cyclone Nargis struck a devastating blow in May 2008, killing 138,000 people. His visit at that time opened the door for international aid organizations to play a greater role in relief efforts.

But Bishow Parajuli, the humanitarian coordinator for the country, said there was currently a backlog of about 219 international aid workers seeking visas to work in the country. The visa process has slowed since March, he said, another issue Mr. Ban took up with General Than Shwe.

International human rights groups have urged Mr. Ban to take a tough line on the junta. He tried, however, to play down expectations, saying that it would be a difficult trip, but that it was important to engage the ruling generals.

“I am very pleased to continue our discussion,” Mr. Ban said in his opening remarks to General Than Shwe. “I appreciate your commitment to move your country forward.”

The meeting was held in a soaring reception room painted with a mural of Buddhist temples set in the jungle, the landscape around Naypyidaw (pronounced nay-pee-DAW), the sprawling, isolated capital the generals constructed out of the rice fields and jungle about 200 miles north of Yangon. Yangon, formerly Rangoon, is the country’s main city.

The official reception building here is called Bayinnaung Hall, named after a 16th-century warrior king who united much of what is today Myanmar, as well as parts of India, Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam.

The monarch is the favorite historical figure of the authoritarian government.

Shortly after Mr. Ban arrived in the country, the authorities said that the current trial of Mrs. Aung San Suu Kyi, who has been under house arrest for 13 of the past 19 years, would be adjourned for one week until July 10. The trial was delayed because of what was described as an administrative error, according to Kyi Win, a lawyer representing her.

“When the judges came onto the bench they announced that the files from the higher court had not been returned,” Mr. Kyi Win said.

“There must be other reasons,” he said in an interview. “But we hate to speculate.”

Mrs. Aung San Suu Kyi is on trial on charges of violating the terms of her current house arrest after an American man swam uninvited across a lake to her home.

Mrs. Aung San Suu Kyi has denied the charge, but could be sentenced to five years imprisonment if found guilty. She is being held at the infamous Insein Prison. John Yettaw, the 53-year-old American intruder, was charged with trespassing and is also detained there.

The Ministry of Education Reduces Some Unnecessary Subjects – Saturday, 13.6.2009

Posted on 4 July 2009
The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 619

“Phnom Penh: Education officials said that starting with the coming academic year 2009-2010, the Ministry will introduce the possibility to chose subjects oriented towards different directions for Grade 11 and Grade 12 students.

“The head of the Department for Higher Education, Mr. Chreng Limsry, said, ‘This new program will allow Grade 11 and Grade 12 students to chose subjects that they are good at.’ He added, ‘This new program will reduce some unnecessary subjects that are not so important for the students in their future life.

“This program is divided into two types: The first one has a basic level of mathematics, in which the students are required to study mathematics four hours, then Khmer literature six ours, English or French four hours, and sports two hours per week, and they have to choose four more subjects, choosing among thirteen subjects in total.

“He went on to say that the second type has a higher level of mathematics, which requires the students to study mathematics eight hours, Khmer literature six hours, English or French two hours, and sports two hours, and in addition three more subjects.

“He added that because this program is new, the Ministry of Education requires every high school to apply, based on their possibilities, as some schools lack teachers, classrooms, and other basic materials. He said, ‘We do it following the possibilities, we have to do it step by step.’

“The head of the Department for Educational Program Development of the Ministry of Education, Mr. Eng Kimly, said that this curriculum is a mixture of regional and European educational programs, abandoning the Francophone or Anglo-Saxon systems. The Ministry of Education worked on this curriculum since 2006, but it can be introduced only as the curriculum of the new year, after it has been further developed continually.

“Mr. Eng Kimly said that the program provides three benefits: First, it does not waste students’ money to buy many books; Second, it excludes unnecessary subjects as they are not beneficial for future use; and Third, it more clearly directs students towards job profiles or careers in the future.

“Asked whether his school is prepared for this new program, the Bak Tuk High School director, Mr. Sok Sovanna, said that as the Ministry of Education allows each school to apply this program according to their capability, his school will not allow students to choose all subjects as they want, as there are not enough teachers, classrooms, and basic materials.

“He added that when students choose one of the two types, the school suggests that they discuss it with their parents, and then the school will explain to which extent the school is able support it.

“He added, ‘We ask the students whether they can handle it or not, if they choose the basic, or the high level of mathematics, and we ask them what skill they will choose for their higher education. The school can direct students better than their parents, because it knows which subjects the students are good at.’

“The acting director of the Preah Reach Samphear High School in Kampot, Mr. Kong Sophat, welcomes this new program, but the challenge for his school is to have the necessary teachers, as his school lacks about 50 teachers. Also, his school has not enough classrooms.

“The Ang Sophy High School director in the Kompong Tralach district in Kampot, Mr. Heng Seng, said, ‘The students of my school are satisfied with this new program.’ However, he said that his school lacks teachers and books for Khmer literature, mathematics, and English.

“The president of the Cambodian Independent Teachers’ Association, Mr. Rong Chhun, said that other countries can implement this program well, but in Cambodia, the quality of education is very poor, so this reform can not proceed smoothly, and the Ministry of Education should first find ways to improve the quality of education.

“He added, ‘This program should not be implemented, because there is not yet a situation that allows active participation by teachers and students.’

”Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #4937, 4.7.2009
Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Saturday, 4 July 2009

Migrant fishermen fall through cracks in Thai trafficking laws

Taiwan News
By Joel BrinkleyMcClatchy
Tribune News Service

Don't ever accept an invitation to go fishing in Thailand. You might not come back.

Almost daily, bodies are washing ashore along the coasts of Thailand, Malaysia, Burma, Cambodia. These are unfortunate migrants, most of them from here in Cambodia. These people were sold to Thai fishermen who took them out to sea, worked them until they starved to death and then threw them overboard. It happens all the time.

The problem got so bad that the United States Senate's Foreign Relations Committee and the United Nations both but put out reports in recent weeks excoriating Thai and Malaysian authorities for selling Cambodian and Burmese migrants to Thai boat captains, sending them to a near-certain death. "If they are unable to pay for their release," the Senate report said, "the refugees are sold into forced labor, most commonly on fishing boats."

Once on the boat, "they don't come back," said Maj. Gen Visut Vanichbut of the Thai police. "All they get to eat is the fish that get left over in the net. They aren't paid. If they get sick, they're thrown overboard."

When they die, from overwork or starvation, their bodies are thrown to the sharks. In most cases, no one knew the victim was on the boat, and so no one claims the body if it washes ashore.

The general told me about this last year. But the United Nations report shows that the hideous problem continues at full force even now. It quotes several Cambodians who watched fishermen decapitate captives or throw them overboard. Several governments, not just Thailand's, are at fault. And by all accounts, the economic crisis is exacerbating the problem.

Until just now, the Cambodian law governing trafficking did not even recognize men as potential victims. The laws were written to protect women and children drawn into sexual slavery. But in June, the government in Phnom Penh announced that it was revising the statute.

"Today we change our strategy also to focus on men," Kong Chhan, a deputy director in the Ministry of Social Affairs, told the Phnom Penh Post.

Now we can only wait for Thailand to change its strategy.

Most of the news you hear from Thailand these days involves the riots and demonstrations to overturn whatever government happens to be in power. No one talks about the fishing-boat problem. The fishermen pay off the police. The police then cover up the crimes, and so hundreds of victims continue to die month after month.

If a victim manages to survive, then Thailand is well-equipped to care for him and then use international agencies to help send him home. The Thai government has shelters and administrators whose jobs are to help human-trafficking victims. I have seen them. The shelters are quite nice. And that serves as a stark illustration of a noxious paradox that afflicts human-trafficking enforcement in Thailand, Cambodia and much of the world.

When human trafficking first came into focus for law-enforcement a decade ago, legal and political officials everywhere put primary emphasis on protecting the victims - the people who were lured into slavery and abused. Stories a decade ago of police and immigration agents jailing and then deporting the trafficking victims along with their captors horrified human-rights advocates, and their complaints were quite influential when the first human-trafficking laws were drafted.

No pressure

That victim-oriented approach has held firm all these years, and "it has proved to work perfectly for the Thai," said Lance Bonneau head of the International Organization of Migration office in Bangkok, his tone oozing disgust. His organization works with the Thai government to send trafficking victims back home to Cambodia, Burma - just as other IOM officers do all over the world.

"If you 'have' the victim," Bonneau told me, "there's no pressure to go after the traffickers" who are paying off the police. "It doesn't upset any of the arrangements the police have" with the fishing boat captains, the brothel and dance-club owners or others who enslave hapless victims. The traffickers can pursue their unconscionable work; the police can continue taking their kickbacks.

When the State Department researches its annual Trafficking in Persons report each year and asks Thailand what it is doing to fight trafficking, the Thai can point to their anti-trafficking laws and to those lovely shelters for victims. Usually, that's enough to save Thailand from a poor rating.

Thailand officials responded to the Senate and United Nations allegations with angry denials. Maybe in Washington's next report, it will look a little deeper at Thailand.

U.N. chief to meet Thai PM after Myanmar visit

BANGKOK, July 4 (Xinhua) -- Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said that he will meet with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon after Ban concluded his visit to Myanmar late Saturday.

The two sides will talk about ties between ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations), the United Nations, Myanmar and Thai-Cambodia border dispute, Abhisit was quoted by the Nation news website as saying.

Thailand currently chairs the ASEAN, which includes Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Ban will end his two-day official visit to Myanmar late Saturday and will make a stop over at Thailand's Suvarnabhumi Airport at around 10:00 p.m. local time.

During his visit, Ban met with Myanmar top leader Senior-General Than Shwe, who is Chairman of the State Peace and Development Council in Myanmar's new capital of Nay Pyi Taw. A broad range of issues including long standing concerns to the U.N. and the international community as well as Aung San Suu Kyi's were discussed.

Ban also met with leaders of legal political parties and inspected the reconstruction in cyclone-hit areas.

Abhisit told reporters that he is well-prepared to talk with Ban about the current Thai-Cambodia disputes which have Preah Vihear Temple at the heart of the problem.

The area around Preah Vihear Temple, which was inscribed as a World Heritage Site on July 7 last year, has been the scene of a tense standoff between the Cambodian and Thai armed forces. The Cambodian government insisted that Thai troops have deployed on Cambodian soil, while Thailand said its troops are only in the disputed zone.

Editor: Fang Yang

Thai PM Abhisit to meet UN chief Ban Ki-moon after Myanmar visit

MCOT English News

BANGKOK, July 4 (TNA) - Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said he is ready to discuss with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in transit from Yangon to New York late Saturday regarding relations between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the world body, Myanmar and on the Thai-Cambodian border problem.

Mr. Ban ends his two-day visit to Myanmar late Saturday and will make a brief stopover at Suvarnabhumi international airport at about 10 pm. The Secretary-General has reportedly asked the Myanmar government to release many detained political prisoners including democracy leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi

Several regional issues are expected to be discussed by the two men as Mr. Abhisit said he is well-prepared to discuss with Mr. Ban on the ongoing Thai-Cambodian border problem, if raised, by the UN chief.

Mr. Abhisit said he is confident that a joint inauguration on the construction of a highway in Cambodia with Prime Minister Hun Sen, held early Saturday, would help lower border tensions between the two neighbouring countries.

But troop reductions at the border, especially at the ancient Preah Vihear temple will have to depend on talks between military commanders of the two countries, Mr. Abhisit said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Suthep told journalists on arriving from Cambodia that his brief visit was only aimed at promoting bilateral relations and that he had discussed with Mr. Hun Sen neither Preah Vihear temple nor troop reductions.

What Mr. Hun Sen told his people during the ceremony was that the two countries enjoy warm and friendly relations and the highway would help promote tourism, trade and industrial cooperation, Mr. Suthep reported.

The 131-kilometre highway linking Anlong Veng and Siem Reap provinces will reach Thailand at a border checkpoint in Si Sa Ket province upon completion, set for 2010. Thailand in August 2006 signed a Bt1.3 billion loan agreement to finance the highway construction. (TNA)

Cambodian air authority tightens measures against A/H1N1 flu at airports

(Beijing Time)
Xinhua English

PHNOM PENH, July 4 (Xinhua) -- Cambodia's Secretariat of State of Civil Aviation (SSCA) has taken more actions against A/H1N1 flu in prevention the spreading of the flu through the airports, the press release of the SSCA obtained Saturday said.

All concession companies at airports have set the respond plans in prevention of the flu and we need the cooperation each other if the flu cases occur, Mao Havannal, secretary of state of SSCA said in a press release.

Terminate all hospitalities with national and international travelers at the stairs of planes, and all travelers have to pass through the monitoring system of the health ministry, he added.

Terminate all study trips at the international airports during the flu epidemic, he said, adding that all staff at the airports need to wear facial masks.

"All liquid waste materials from planes, the concession companies at the airports need to pack them and destroyed them properly and regularly," he stressed.

"We hope that all diplomatic corps, NGOs, governmental officials and all involving institutions will join with us in the cooperation in all these cases with this convenient information to combat against the flu," he said.

According to report from health ministry, so far Cambodia has seven confirmed cases of A/H1N1 flu.