News ID: 255294
Published: 0534 GMT July 04, 2019

Cambodia premier censures use of rights as 'political tool' by Western states

Cambodia premier censures use of rights as 'political tool' by Western states

Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen has strongly denounced the United States and some other EU countries for using human rights as a "political tool" to meddle in internal affairs of weaker states.

In a speech to the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, Hun Sen hammered the countries that accused Cambodia of violations "even though human rights records in their own countries are filled with xenophobia, racial discrimination (and) mistreatment of immigrants.”, Presstv Reported.

"We are deeply sad to learn that human rights have been used nowadays by some powerful countries as a political tool... or an excuse for them to interfere in weaker states with sovereignty," Hun Sen said.

The Cambodian leader went on to say that rights issues were being used as a "hostage" in talks on economic ties.

He also condemned Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that he accused of serving "as puppets to foreign interest".

Earlier this year, the European Union took steps to cancel trade benefits that would hurt Cambodia's local garment industry, part of Brussels' response to the elections.

The administration of US President Donald Trump also said it would consider steps, including an expansion of visa restrictions placed on some Cambodian government members.

In 2017, tensions escalated between the US and Cambodia after Hun Sen implied that the United States should withdraw American Peace Corps volunteers.

It came amid accusations that Americans in the Southeast Asian country colluded with an opposition leader against the government.

The Southeast Asian country has held general elections once every five years since 1993, when it emerged from decades of war marked by death and destruction at the hands of a dictatorial regime.

Hun Sen has ruled Cambodia for more than 30 years and is the world's longest serving prime minister.

Resource: Presstv
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