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Cambodian workers being repatriated from Thailand in 2012. Pha Lina

Extra hours for embassy in Thailand

Officials at the Cambodian Embassy in Bangkok will begin working one extra day per week, and one extra hour per day, to deal with the issuance of passports and other legal documents, the Ministry of Labour announced yesterday.

In a statement, the ministry said the decision was made to make an easier and faster process for migrant workers living in Thailand. As many as 600,000 Cambodians are believed to be living and working in Thailand, with a solid majority undocumented.

The ministry’s new schedule runs from today until April 30.

Labour Minister Ith Samheng said the move will benefit migrant workers who don’t have time to get documents because of their work schedules. “Before, the workers couldn’t use these services on the weekend . . . there will also be an extra hour, too, so they can come when they are free from work.”

Bun Hor, a former undocumented Cambodian worker in Thailand, yesterday said he approved of the changes. “I think that it is good to issue documents on the weekend, because many workers only have free time on weekends . . . It will help the worker so much,” he said.

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