The Cambodian embassies in Malaysia and Vietnam have rescued 12 migrants who were cheated by human traffickers offering them well-paying jobs, with some set to be married off to men in China.
Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman Chum Sounry said the Cambodian embassy in Malaysia rescued eight Cambodian workers who illegally crossed into Thailand by car before continuing on to Malaysia for promised jobs.
The eight then sought help from the embassy in Malaysia last month as they fled from authorities cracking down on illegal workers.
Mr Sounry said the eight workers were repatriated to Cambodia at the end of July. The embassy in Malaysia coordinated and issued travel documents for them after they paid for their own flights, and fines issued by Malaysian authorities.
Mr Sounry added that the Cambodian consul-general in Ho Chi Minh City, in collaboration with Vietnamese authorities, rescued four Cambodian women on July 28 who were promised jobs in the country before learning their brokers planned to ship them off to China to be married.
Mr Sounry said the four women were repatriated to Cambodia on Tuesday through the Bavet International border checkpoint in Svay Rieng province.
According to Mr Sounry, the 12 Cambodians rescued were deceived by brokers in their homelands of Tbong Khmum, Stung Treng, Kampong Speu, Kampong Cham provinces, and Phnom Penh.
In the first half of 2017, Cambodian embassies and consulates intervened to help thousands of Cambodian citizens and workers in ten countries, including Thailand, where 1,000 to 2,000 workers were aided each week, according to a Foreign Ministry report.
The report added that most migrant workers who cross borders illegally end up suffering abuse from employers.