Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Rohingya refugee back in hospital, friend says

Rohingya refugee back in hospital, friend says

Rohingya refugee back in hospital, friend says

A Rohingya Muslim refugee – who was transferred to Cambodia from Nauru under a costly and controversial deal and said he feared he would die in the Kingdom – found himself back in hospital yesterday, according to a friend and confidant.

Mohammed Yusuf, who said he was like a “brother” to unwell refugee Mohammed Rashid, yesterday said Rashid had been taken to the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital on Sunday, after a three-day hospitalisation last week.

Rashid is one of only two remaining refugees who moved to the Kingdom under the A$55 million scheme, which Interior Ministry refugee department director Kerm Sarin defended yesterday.

“We have the obligation to give them protection . . . The refugees from Nauru have to come [here] voluntarily; we could not force them,” he said.

Sarin said he was “not concerned” about the $8,000 payment Australia promised refugees to entice them, and which Rashid said he had not received in full. Referring to the A$40 million in aid given to Cambodia, he added: “I don’t know exactly what the money is for.”

His comments come in the wake of Australian Greens Senator Sarah Hansen Young calling for the auditor-general to investigate millions spent “to grease the wheels of a corrupt regime, so that the government can dump a handful of people in an impoverished country”.

International Organisation for Migration (IOM) spokesperson Joe Lowry said he would not disclose how much money had been entrusted to them out of the $2 million Australia outlaid so far to resettle the refugees.

MOST VIEWED

  • Stock photo agencies cash in on Khmer Rouge tragedy
    Stock-photo companies selling images from S-21 raises ethics concerns

    A woman with short-cropped hair stares directly into the camera, her head cocked slightly to the side. On her lap is a sleeping infant just barely in the frame. The woman was the wife of a Khmer Rouge officer who fell out of favour, and

  • Defence Ministry denies weapons in smuggling case came from Cambodia

    After a Thai national was arrested last week for allegedly smuggling guns from Cambodia to Thailand, Cambodia's Defence Ministry has claimed the weapons seized during the arrest are not used in Cambodia, despite the fact that both types of rifle seized are commonly found in

  • Prime Minister: Take back islands from inactive developers

    The government will “take back” land on roughly 30 islands from private companies that have not made progress on planned developments, Prime Minister Hun Sen said in a speech on Monday that also targeted land-grabbing villagers and idle provincial governors. Speaking at the inauguration of the

  • Land on capital’s riverfront is opened up for investment

    The government has signed off on a proposal to designate more than 9 hectares of land along Phnom Penh’s riverfront as state-private land, opening it up for private investment or long-term leasing. The 9.25-hectare stretch of riverfront from the capital’s Night Market to the