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Cambodia considers aid for Rohingya refugees

Ven Rathavong / Khmer Times Share:
More than 600,000 Rohingya have fled Myanmar since August. AFP

Cambodia is considering humanitarian aid for refugees in Myanmar’s Rakhine state, the scene of allegations of ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya Muslim minority.

Prime Minister Hun Sen told a meeting of garment workers in Kandal province yesterday that Cambodia was also considering aid for people fleeing fighting in the Philippines.

However, Mr Hun Sen said Cambodia would vote against any United Nations resolution which interfered in the internal affairs of Myanmar.

“For us, non-interference is the biggest principle,” he told workers. “We will contribute to resolve the humanitarian crisis in Myanmar, but we will not interfere in Myanmar’s internal affairs.”

Mr Hun Sen emphasised that Cambodia is enjoying peace, while other countries in Asean still suffer from wars and fighting.

More than 600,000 Rohingya have fled the mainly Buddhist country since the military launched a counter-insurgency operation in northern Rakhine state in late August.

On Wednesday, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said he would not yet push for sanctions against Myanmar over the Rohingya refugee crisis.

But he called for an independent investigation into “credible” reports that soldiers committed atrocities against the Muslim minority.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Chum Sounry could not be reached for comment.

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