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Friday 16/8/2013: Calmn down

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August 2013
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Thong ke dan so 2013 14,68 triệu người, tăng 9% so với 2008 ; trong đó 7,12 triệu nam giới và 7,56 triệu nữ giới; dân số thành thị chiếm 21,44%, khoảng 3,1 triệu người.
Cambodian Population Reaches 14.68 Million, Up 9%

AKP Phnom Penh, August 15, 2013 —

Preliminary Results of Cambodia Inter-Censal Population Survey (CIPS) 2013 showed that Cambodian population reached 14.68 million, up some 9 percent from 13.4 million in 2008.

“7.12 millions of the total population are male and 7.56 millions are female, according to the National Institute of Statistics, Ministry of Planning,” H.E. Chhay Than, Minister of Planning, said at the ceremony to release the preliminary results held here this morning.

The urban population constitutes 21.44 percent of the total population, up from 19.51 percent in 2008, he added.

According to the survey, out of the total population, some 3.1 millions live in urban areas, while the rest in rural areas.

This survey provides updated data on the population size and growth, for the preparation of strategic plans for social and economic development in the future, said H.E. Chhay Than.
Senior Minister Chhay Than Presides over a Releasing Ceremony of Preliminary Results of Cambodia Inter-Censal Population Survey 2013

AKP Phnom Penh, August 15, 2013 –
Cambodia’s Senior Minister H.E. Chhay Than, Minister of Planning, presides over here this morning a Ceremony of Releasing of Preliminary Results of Cambodia Inter-Censal Population Survey (CIPS) 2013.

KINH TE

CPC sẵn sàng tham gia Hiệp hội các quốc gia có vùng bảo tồn ngập nước vào tháng 9 năm 2013 tại Hội An, Việt Nam. Cambodia Ready to Become Full Member of MFF

AKP Phnom Pen, August 15, 2013 –

Cambodia is ready to become a full member of Mangroves For the Future (MFF), a partnership-based initiative for promoting investment in coastal ecosystems for sustainable development.

Following the approval of its National Strategy and Action Plan in June, Cambodia is expected to join MFF as the 10th member country within 2013, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (ICUN).

H.E. Dr. Vann Monyneath, Chair of Executive Board for MFF of Cambodia (EB-MFF-CAM) will present Cambodia’s letter of request to join MFF as full member country at the 10th MFF Regional Steering Committee meeting scheduled to be held in September this year in Hoi An, Vietnam.

Cambodia hoped to gain a lot of benefits from joining MFF for development of coastal resources and the improvement of local people’s livelihoods, said H.E. Dr. Vann Monyneath.

MFF adopts mangroves as its flagship ecosystem in recognition of the important role that mangrove forests played in reducing the impact of the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, and the severe effect on coastal livelihoods caused by the degradation of mangroves.

Even though Cambodia was not struck by the 2004 tsunami, it is vulnerable to climate-related hazards and other catastrophic events such as floods, windstorms and seawater intrusion.

According to a report of the Forestry Administration, in 2010 Cambodia has some 78,405 hectares of mangrove trees which is the main shelter for thousands of bio-diversity.

There are 50 kinds of mangrove trees in Asia, of which 37 are found in Cambodia, showed a study in 1997.

The current nine members of MFF are Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, the Maldives, Pakistan, the Seychelles, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam.

H.E. Cham Prasidh Chairs a Preparatory Meeting for Upcoming 45th ASEAN Economic Ministers Meeting

AKP Phnom Penh, August 15, 2013 –

Senior Minister and Minister of Commerce H.E. Cham Prasidh chaired on Aug. 13 an inter-ministerial preparatory meeting for the 45th ASEAN Economic Ministers Meeting and related meetings to be held from Aug. 17 to 21 in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam.

On the occasion, H.E. Cham Prasidh, also Cambodia’s ASEAN Economic Minister, recalled the ASEAN’s endeavors in achieving the common goal of ASEAN, i.e. the establishment of an ASEAN Economic Community by 2015 with free movement of goods, services, investment, skilled labor, and freer flow of capital so as to increase the regional economic potential.

Meanwhile, ASEAN has many other goals such as the regional economic integration through the establishment of free trade areas, comprehensive cooperation partnership and so on.

The meeting also examined different related reports and discussed the documents on Consultations between ASEAN Economic Ministers and partner countries, on ASEAN Economic Ministers Meeting, on Mekong-Japan Economic Ministers Meeting, on Cambodia-Lao PDR-Myanmar-Vietnam (CLMV) Economic Ministers Meeting, and on ASEAN Mekong Basin Development Cooperation (AMBDC) Meeting.

DOI NGOAI
Thai Embassy Provides Dharma Books to Ministry of Cults and Religions

AKP Phnom Penh, August 15, 2013 —

Cambodian Minister of Cults and Religions H.E. Min Khin received here early this week 5,600 dharma books from a Thai delegation led by H.E. Touchayoot Pakdi, Ambassador of Thailand to Cambodia.

Speaking at the handover ceremony of the dharma books, H.E. Min Khin expressed profound thanks to the Royal Thai Embassy for the donation, saying that it is very useful for the Buddhist monks in their studies and researches.

The donation reflects the good gesture and better relationship, not only in political and economic, but also in religious fields between Cambodia and Thailand, underlined H.E. Minister.

In addition to the dharma books, the Royal Thai Embassy also offered notebooks and 1,200 pencils to Cambodian Buddhist monks.

BINH LUAN
COMMENTARY: Magical Formula for Voter Registration or Undermining a Voting Process before Campaigning Even Started?

AKP Phnom Penh, August 15, 2013 —

“Audit Finds a Degraded Cambodian Voter Registry for July Polls” – by VOA on Mar. 25, speaks volumes of the partisan writings of the said media.

One could only assume that the objective of the said article is to cast doubts even before the campaigning period officially started for the Cambodian election which was held on July 28 this year.

It is also synonymous with the chants of the opposition of voter frauds, blablabla, etc. Therefore, opposition calls and recent assertions that only ‘massive fraud’ prevented or inhibited their victory, to be deeply disingenuous and politically irresponsible.

This stems from a so called audit done on the Cambodian voter registration system and process by alien entities. An audit which is also flawed as the National Election Committee of Cambodia is less than two decades old and is upgrading and improving itself as it develops.

Compare this with the United States, more than two centuries old democracy which up to march 2013, has the Supreme Court deliberating on voter registration in the state of Arkansas.

The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in a case that seeks to redefine a federal law aimed at streamlining the nation’s voter registration process.

There are many examples of this. The very fact that the VOA gave coverage quoting opposition and opposition inclined organizations freedom of space speaks of mischief and malfeasance.

This is apparently set the stage for the opposition what comes to them naturally – prepare the unsuspecting mindset to cry foul or fraud when they lost the elections. This has been the case in Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and even in the “bedrock” of democracy – USA, where the “Bush vs. Gore” elections was decided by the Supreme Court and not be the electorate or in this case, the electoral college!

This article insinuated and presupposed that because of the supposed findings of the audit, any election result that yields anything other than opposition victory is: invalid, illegitimate, and fraud.

The opposition, as they have since 1998 been building their campaign upon the perception that the electoral system is rigged in favor of the incumbent, and in doing that, speculation on opposition news portals has become unquestionable truth for many who get their news through social media.

Many who know the recalcitrant opposition speak in unison when they claim that the opposition leaders possess gifted political and communication skills, though many of these individuals cite these leaders privy to manipulation, narcissism and their involvement in money politics and cronyism.
The goal of a politician is realizing political power. It is imperative that the electorate remains skeptical of allegations from both coalitions.

In this battle of perceptions, the opposition leaders have been working tirelessly to create distrust of the electoral process in the minds of voters, and with rhetoric that negates the legitimacy of anything but their own victory, the opposition has therefore set the stage for street protests and political unrest when they lose the election, similar to what they did in 1998.

Since the opposition could not wrest power legitimately, the TV cameras of international media provided ample coverage of perceived and alleged irregularities. Footage of tear gas, water cannons, and any ensuing crackdown would dilute the credibility of a ruling government, even though it was ere democratically elected.

Irresponsible media and western friendly media add fuel to these speculations and allegations by giving unabated and unsupported or substantiated media coverage to these demagogic politicians.

Would that be fair to the hypothetical majority of the CPP voters in such a scenario? Both coalitions are guilty of employing propaganda tactics, and Cambodian voters should remain objective and critical of any politician alleging mass scandals at politically opportune moments.

So what is then the magical formula for voter registration to avoid registration fraud? Heaven knows as looking at the United States, after more than 200 years of democracy, they are still struggling to have a fool proof system effective across the board!

There is no short cut to completely eliminate registration deficiencies. One should not label such deficiencies as fraud unless in the final analysis, the motive is to nullify the will of the people at the ballot box.

International agencies and international funded media who often take the high ground of righteousness and side with the opposition, in almost every democratic nation imaginable, should consider cutting some slack to Cambodia and assist it to improve their electoral registration process.

This would be a more positive approach rather than condemn and criticize the efforts of the Royal Government to have a free and fair election, which of course, the eyes of the opposition and their foreign supporters would never be deemed free and fair.

By M.H. Tee (long time Cambodian political analyst)

(The comments are solely the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Royal Government of Cambodia.)

HOA KỲ-CPC
U.S. Ambassador Congratulates the July 28 National Election

AKP Phnom Penh, August 15, 2013 —

U.S. Ambassador to Cambodia H.E. William E. Todd has extended his congratulations to Cambodia on the success of the fifth parliamentary elections on July 28, 2013, saying that the elections were peaceful and non-violent.

Speaking to reporters here on Aug. 13 at Eid al-Fitr, the Festival of Fast-Breaking for the Muslim communities at the end of Ramadan, H.E. William E. Todd also congratulated the Cambodian people for having maintained calm for a peaceful and non violent environment since the elections.

If there are demonstrations [against the election results], the U.S. hoped and called for peaceful demonstrations, he added.

“The U.S has a neutral stand, it does not take any political party’s side,” underlined H.E. William E. Todd, stressing that the U.S. hoped that the post-election dispute would be resolved smoothly.

For the Cambodia-U.S. military cooperation, H.E. William E. Todd said the Royal Government of Cambodia had delayed some cooperation programs not only with the U.S, but also with other countries until the new government was formed.

HOA ky va MUSLIM CAmbodia
U.S. Embassy in Phnom Penh Hosts Eid al-Fitr for Cambodian Muslims

AKP Phnom Penh, August 15, 2013 —

The U.S. Embassy in Phnom Penh on Tuesday evening hosted Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of Ramadan, the month-long fasting and prayer, for some 100 Cambodian Muslims.

The celebration was presided over by H.E. William E. Todd, U.S. Ambassador to Cambodia and other Muslim leaders in the country.

Addressing the event, H.E. William E. Todd said this was an opportunity to further promote and renew the friendship and cooperation between the U.S. Embassy in Cambodia and the country’s Muslim communities.

Freedom of religion is an important part of human dignity protection, therefore the U.S. Embassy will continue to work with Cambodian Muslims to strengthen their communities through various programs, he added.

QUAN SU
Cambodia-U.S. Military Cooperation Goes On

AKP Phnom Penh, August 14, 2013 –

Cambodia denied it has suspended military cooperation with the U.S., saying that all media reports about the suspension are untrue, said yesterday Lt. Gen. NemSowath, Director General of the General Department of Policy and Foreign Affairs of the Ministry of National Defense.

The confirmation was made after local newspapers reported that the U.S. State Department said that Cambodia postponed or canceled military cooperation programs with the U.S. following the elections in late July.

Just some military programs had been postponed under the royal government’s principles and the current situation, clarified Lt. Gen. Nem Sowath, stressing that the postponement has not been made unilaterally, but agreed by both sides.


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