The Ministry of Interior has since January 2022 received 700 complaints of various offences including human trafficking, with all entered into official records so they could not be covered up, said minister Sar Kheng.

Addressing the opening of a forum on partnerships between the government and civil society on January 10, Sar Kheng said the government is paying close attention to maintaining public order and combating crimes and human trafficking of all forms.

“The 700 complaints that we have received thus far are documented so they cannot be covered up,” he said on January 10, pledging that the government will not relent in its fight against these crimes.

He advised all capital and provincial governors to address any complaints in their jurisdictions transparently and correctly, without ignoring them or performing poorly, and without any collusion with perpetrators.

He added that even if the governors or police covered up these offences when receiving complaints or failed to address them, the ministry would still find out and enforce accountability through regular inspections and by summoning them over the cases.

“If these offences are covered up, it means that we support unscrupulous acts ... If we perform poorly and take things lightly, I will hold them accountable,” he warned.

Sar Kheng said civil society groups have also joined the government in seeking solutions to improve human rights, the judiciary, health education and the environment.

According to the minister, after the Law on Associations and Non-Governmental Organisations (LANGO) came into force in 2015, a total of 1,556 associations and NGOs registered with the ministry: 868 associations and 688 NGOs.

As of the end of 2022, there were 6,091 local associations and NGOs registered: 2,623 associations and 3,468 NGOs.

At the forum, Sar Kheng also advised that the capital and provincial administrations take immediate action to stop a small number of associations and NGOs from deceiving people.