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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - News Briefs: 14 December 2007

News Briefs: 14 December 2007

Hun Sen visits IndiaPM Hun Sen paid a state visit to India December 7-10 to meet

with President Pratibha Patil, VP Hamid Ansari and PM Manmohan Singh. The countries

signed agreements in several areas, including: foreign office consultations, transfer

of sentenced persons, defense cooperation, water resource management, agriculture,

line of credit and technical assistance.

Freedom check upRepresentatives of Freedom House (FH), an American civil liberties

and rule of law NGO, visited Phnom Penh December 5-7 to discuss its survey on the

state of political and civil rights and press freedom in Cambodia. The survey gave

abysmal scores to Cambodia in the categories Independent judiciary and Protection

from state imprisonment and torture. Cambodia's score in press freedom improved however.

FH officials met with several officials at the Council of Ministers for several hours.

"They were unhappy with some of our characterizations of Cambodian history and

current events,"said FH representative Thomas Melia. But, he said, "they

took our reports very seriously."

Threat for CambodiaUNDP said Cambodia should seek assistance to mitigate climate

change with projects such as renewable energy. Cambodia faces immediate threats to

agricultural production and food security from climate change through changes to

rainfall, temperatures and the availability of water, UNDP said in a November 29

statement. It said long-term risks include greater insecurity, increased sea-level,

cyclones and disruption or collapse of Cambodia's critical ecosystems. There is also

risk of increased disease.

Corruption index Seventy-two percent of the 1,016 Cambodians interviewed said they

paid a bribe to receive a service in the previous 12 months, according to Transparency

International's 2007 Global Corruption Barometer released December 6. Only Cameroon-where

79% of the population reported paying bribes-had a higher corruption score.

ADB Water report A November 29 Asian Development Bank report on water resource management

stressed the disparity in the quality of Cambodia's urban and rural water infrastructure.

The report said while 82% of the population lives in rural areas, rural sanitation

coverage-cited as 8% by the ADB and 16% by the government-is the lowest in the region

and second lowest outside Africa.



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