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Woman seeking help in China repatriated

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The Cambodian Consulate General in Shanghai worked in collaboration with Chinese authorities to assist Sem Srey Pech (centre). Photo supplied

Woman seeking help in China repatriated

The Cambodian woman who appealed to Prime Minister Hun Sen to help her return from China has arrived at Phnom Penh International Airport, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation spokesman Koy Kuong said on Thursday.

According to a ministry announcement last week, the Cambodian Consulate General in Shanghai worked in collaboration with Chinese authorities to assist Sem Srey Pech, who was staying in China’s Zhejiang province. She wanted to return to Cambodia because she did not get along with her husband.

The consulate released a permission letter for her and the Chinese police gave her a visa on Wednesday. Following the Consulate General’s request, the NGO Chab Dai Coalition agreed to help her pay for her flight ticket.

The consulate also paid for her daily expenses, including a train ticket from Wenzhou to Shanghai and Covid-19 testing. The total amount paid was $500.

In a video appealing for Hun Sen’s help via Facebook earlier this month, Srey Pech said she was deceived into working in China and claimed to have been tortured by her boss.

Chou Bun Eng, the Ministry of Interior secretary of state and permanent vice-chair of the National Committee for Counter Trafficking of Cambodia (NCCT), told reporters at an anti-human trafficking workshop on Wednesday that Cambodian women should be careful when choosing foreign husbands to avoid being deceived.

“We need to protect ourselves from being deceived by others. Don’t take risks. Learn to live an enriching life in our country like others do. Millions [around the world] wind up remaining [in their home countries]. Why is it that we can’t live here?” she said.

She added that there is nothing prohibiting people from going abroad but people should make sure they stay safe.

“When you are deceived, it wastes time and you lose property and dignity. It is good being able to be rescued. But if no one can rescue you, you will have a lifelong crisis,” she said.

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