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[In Review

Nov 29: Marchers take to the streets of Phnom Penh to mark World AIDS day

(Dec 1).

Figures from the World Health Organization suggest Cambodia may have one of the highest

HIV infection rates in the Asia-Pacific region.

WHO figures published in November revealed 3371 new cases of HIV infection in the

first half of 1996, more than half the cumulative number reported since 1991. The

WHO said it expected the number of AIDS cases in Cambodia to increase significantly

in the near future.

Nov 30: Reuters reported: A group of Cambodian state employees say they

have formed their first free trade union, marking the occasion with a demonstration

organized by an opposition political party.

The Free Trade Union of Khmer Civil Servants, which is headed by a university teacher

and boasts 190 members, issued a statement at the protest requesting a wage increase

of $4 a month.

The demonstration and union were organized by the opposition Khmer Nation Party which

is led by former Finance Minister Sam Rainsy.

But the legal status of the new union is in doubt as the civil service law bans unions

and the draft labor law, which gives workers the right to unionize, does not cover

civil servants.

Dec 2: Agence Khmere de Presse reported: Malaysia's new ambassador to Cambodia

Mr Kaal Binismaun presents his credentials at the Royal Palace.

During the ceremony the King praised Malaysia's role in bringing peace to Cambodia

and the strengthening of ties between two countries achieved by the previous diplomatic

mission.

Dec 2: 500 Filipino residents of Phnom Penh present Doon Po Sa Amin - a

celebration of Philippine culture at the Chatamouk theater.

The show, held under the patronage of the Philippino embassy included traditional

song, dance and music, all performed by amateurs.

Dec 3: Reuters reported: Australian Foreign Minister Alexander Downer said

he was concerned about a possible security threat at Australia's embassy in Cambodia

and would raise the issue with Deputy Prime Minister Sar Kheng.

Second Prime Minister Hun Sen had earlier warned US ambassador Kenneth Quinn of a

bomb threat against the US, Australian, French and Vietnamese embassies.

Hun Sen declined to elaborate on who might be behind the possible threat, which followed

weeks of heightened political tension in Cambodia.

In Phnom Penh, streets around the US Embassy were initially closed to traffic, but

the cordon was soon called off.

Dec 3: Reuters reported: French police have detained 80 people in connection

with an illegal immigrant racket involving Cambodia.

The arrests in Paris broke a ring allegedly directed by a Chinese family which specialized

in smuggling illegal immigrants into France from Thailand, Cambodia and Laos and

employing them in clandestine clothing factories.

Authorities reported a recent sharp upturn in the number of illegal entries from

the Far East.

Dec 5: The government of Japan announces it has donated more than $3.5

million to Cambodia through the Japan Grant Assistance for Grass-Roots Projects (JGAGRP)

since 1991.

The government of Japan also announced it will extend the grants to include three

additional projects; the provision of water drilling equipment, the construction

and equipping of a health center in Kandal and the supply of food preserving equipment

to the Don Bosco Vocational Training Center.

Dec 5: Reuters reported: A man appeared in a Melbourne court charged with

killing two members of an immigrant Cambodian family.

Manuel Adajian, 41, was charged with the murder of Lean Thoeun Pin, 49, and his 21-year-old

son, Virayuth, at a city -center office building Dec 4.

Adajian is also charged with attempting to kill Pin's wife, Siv Eng, and with stealing

jewelry.

Police allege that Adajian, a jeweler, was engaged in a business dispute with Pin,

who ran a gem selling business.

Dec 5: Reuters reported: Australian customs officials have seized more

than five tonnes of compressed cannabis on a ship which arrived in Sydney from Cambodia

November 9.

The haul - worth more than $39 million and representing Australia's biggest ever

drug seizure - was concealed behind a false wall in a container of jute.

Customs Minister Geoff Prosser said a sniffer dog exposed the cannabis Nov 13. No

arrests have been made.

Dec 7-8: The inaugural Open Squash Competition is held at the International

Youth Club in Phnom Penh, which sees Tony Way beating off Allan Edwards to win the

Grand Final.

Players and spectators conclude that it was "a most enjoyable weekend",

according to a statement from the organizers.

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