Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - American embassy advisory ‘not reality’




American embassy advisory ‘not reality’

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A motorbike passes the US Embassy in April in Phnom Penh. post staff

American embassy advisory ‘not reality’

The Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) and several government officials claimed that the US Embassy’s advisory to its citizens to be cautious during the upcoming elections is driven by political motivation and does not reflect the actual situation in the Kingdom.

The criticism comes in the wake of an embassy announcement published on its website on Tuesday.

The announcement said that the national elections on July 29 might lead to political gatherings, protests or security force mobilisations and US citizens should avoid participating in such activities and avoid trips to provinces.

CPP spokesperson Sok Eysan said that the announcement did not reflect the country’s “stability” but instead painted a grim picture that elections in Cambodia are not safe.

“In reality, people live in peace and there is political stability, and no one worries as much as the US Embassy does. Second, it is a political gesture with indirect intimidation."

“It is ineffective and the important thing is the real situation [in the country]. It says the opposite of reality."

“And no one at the embassy believes in [the statement],” he added.

Government spokesman Phay Siphan said that it is a diplomatic responsibility of each country to protect its citizens and it is typical of the US Embassy to appeal to its citizens to be cautious.

“It is an administrative duty of the embassy and it is done every time, but in fact nothing has happened in Cambodia,” he said.

Ministry of Interior spokesperson Khieu Sopheak said the authorities will ensure the safety of all people, whether they are American or French, as is their duty.

“But if there is any information [of security threats], please share it with the Cambodian authorities,” he said.

However, Sam Kuntheamy, the director at the Neutral and Impartial Committee for tial Committee for Free And Fair Elections (Nicfec), said the embassy’s appeal does not have any underlying political tone and it was merely to inform its citizens about safety and security.

“It shows that it pays attention to its people and does not have political motive. It is just for the safety of its citizens living in Cambodia."

“We think that nothing will happen in the upcoming elections,” he added.

Earlier, Kiet Chantharith, spokesman of the National Police, said that 60,000 personnel from various forces are assigned to maintain security and public order during the election.

The joint forces consist of the National Police, Royal Cambodian Armed Forces and military police, and includes the security guards.

Embassy spokesman Arend Zwartjes said in an email to The Post that it did not have further comment to make.

MOST VIEWED

  • Body of woman killed in Bangkok returns

    The Cambodian embassy in Thailand is working to repatriate the body of a casino dealer who was shot dead in Bangkok on Monday night. Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation spokesman Kuy Kuong told The Post on Wednesday that officials are preparing paperwork to

  • Chikungunya hits 15 provinces, says gov’t

    Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said on Thursday that the chikungunya outbreak in the Kingdom has spread to 15 provinces. Some 1,700 people are now suspected to have the disease. Vandine urged people to prevent its further spread by eliminating shelters for the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes

  • Gov’t exempts visa A and B holders from Covid fees

    Airline passengers who are diplomats and officials of international organisations holding Type A and B visas for travel to Cambodia are exempted from paying Covid-19 testing fees, said the Ministry of Health in its latest adjustment of rules on Wednesday. Health Minister Mam Bun Heng

  • Bill covering dress code draws ire

    Ministry of Interior secretary of state Ouk Kim Lek responded on Tuesday to criticism concerning a draft law that would ban women from wearing overly revealing clothing, saying that input from all parties will be considered as the law moves through the promulgation process. Several

  • Passing the test: Is Cambodia’s education system failing its people?

    The Kingdom’s education system needs to grow its people but some flaws might stifle​ this growth Coming from the Khmer Rouge occupation, with the loss of many scholars and academicians and a collapsed government, the education system had to be reconstructed from scratch – one

  • What’s the deal with Cambodia and China’s FTA?

    Cambodia’s Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with China kicks off a series of FTAs in future but for now, critics wonder what else the parties could bring to the table apart from what it already has to date By the end of this year, Cambodia