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NGO’s fate now rests with Prime Minister

Mom Sophon / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
The outside of AIM’s office. The NGO faces expulsion from the country. KT/Mai Vireak

The Ministry of Interior’s investigation into Agape International Mission, which provided information to the ABC and CNN that some young Cambodian girls were sexually exploited by their mothers, has concluded and been sent to the Prime Minister for approval.   

A senior official at the ministry, who asked not to be named, said the publication of Agape’s findings seriously affected the honour of Cambodian women.

“The organisation must fix the damage they have done to the value of Cambodian women,” he said.

After the organisation was featured on both CNN and ABC news, Prime Minister Hun Sen said he could not accept AIM’s insult that “Cambodian girls were sold by their mothers for sex.”

The Prime Minister said providing such information to the news broadcasters was a serious insult to Cambodian woman, and he ordered the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation to close the organisation without pardon.

“This insult is not tolerable, this organisation must leave Cambodia,” he said. “We cannot allow it to continue anymore.”

One of AIM’s staff, who asked not to be named, said he and his team were waiting for the government’s decision, and he hoped the government would allow the organisation to continue operating in Cambodia.

The president of the Union of Journalist Federations of Cambodia Huy Vannak agreed that AIM had damaged Cambodia’s reputation and must find a way to fix it.

“We are still cooperating and looking forward to legal and technical solutions for this organization to fix what they have done to affect the value of Cambodian women,” he said.

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