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US POW/MIA chair praises kingdom

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Ann Mills-Griffiths, chairwoman of the board of directors of the National League of POW/MIA Families meeting with Minister of Interior Sar Kheng at the National Assembly on December 6. SAR KHENG VIA FACEBOOK

US POW/MIA chair praises kingdom

Ann Mills-Griffiths, chairwoman of the board of directors of the National League of POW/MIA Families, praised Cambodia for being one the league’s most supportive partners as it sought to repatriate the remains of American soldiers who went missing during the war.

Mills-Griffiths offered her thanks during a courtesy call with Minister of Interior Sar Kheng at the National Assembly on December 6.

“Despite the Covid-19 situation in Cambodia, the Kingdom has shown that there has been no slowdown in the search for the remains of missing American soldiers, and progress has been made. Cambodia has worked closely with its US partners,” she said.

During the meeting, she told Sar Kheng that she has visited Cambodia many times, but this would likely be her last journey to the Kingdom.

She extended her thanks to King Norodom Sihamoni, Prime Minister Hun Sen, Sar Kheng and all of the officials who had worked tirelessly to provide humanitarian assistance in helping search for the remains of missing Americans.

“I first visited in 1992. Since then I have travelled to many parts of Cambodia,” she said.

Sar Kheng said the government’s policy has not changed and the country will continue to support the search for the remains of the US military, of whom there are currently 48, he added.

“All Cambodian institutions are ready to cooperate with her project, in 2022 and 2023,” he said.

Sar Kheng wished Mills-Griffiths success on her current visit, hoping that the search reaches a satisfactory conclusion.

Kin Phea, director of the International Relations Institute at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, said on December 7 that he agreed with Mills-Griffiths and Sar Kheng’s remarks regarding cooperation between Cambodia and the US, but that more is expected of the US side.

He said the Cambodian government has always provided its full cooperation and respect for the search for the remains of missing US soldiers in the Kingdom, and the US should therefore respond in kind.

“While Cambodia has always fulfilled its duties and responsibilities in a friendly and honest manner, as far as I can tell, the US government does not seem to place much value on Cambodia’s cooperation on the issue,” he said.

He said the two sides should increase their mutual cooperation and understanding. Cambodia has always been willing to assist with the search for the remains of missing American soldiers, as well as other areas, he added.

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