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Foreign Affairs Ministry talks fake meds with French

Interior Minister Sar Kheng drives an excavator over boxes of counterfeit products as authorities destroyed 81 tonnes of contraband at an October event in Phnom Penh.
Interior Minister Sar Kheng drives an excavator over boxes of counterfeit products as authorities destroyed 81 tonnes of contraband at an October event in Phnom Penh. Hong Menea

Foreign Affairs Ministry talks fake meds with French

Counterfeit medicine was a key topic during a meeting this week between Minister of Foreign Affairs Prak Sokhonn, French Ambassador Eva Nguyen Binh and representatives of the International Institute of Research on Counterfeit Medicine.

The French Embassy confirmed yesterday that Jean David Levitte, the group's board president, and Bernard Leroy, a director, met on Monday with Sokhonn to “discuss the scourge that counterfeit medicines represent”.

Counterfeit drugs have been a recurring issue in Cambodia. In 2015, the Ministry of Health estimated that around 4,000 health-service providers are illegal. In April that same year, 100,000 crates of counterfeit meds were seized in a single raid.

The embassy also raised the deteriorating political situation in Cambodia with government officials. With July’s national elections looming, the main opposition party was dissolved and its president imprisoned amid widespread outcry.

“The French authorities take any opportunity to convey to the Cambodian authorities their preoccupation on the current political situation in Cambodia in the run-up to the July elections,” the embassy said.

A Foreign Ministry spokesman could not be reached.

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