News / USA

    Hillary Clinton Endorses UN Human Rights Office in Cambodia

    US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton looks at a wall of faces of those killed by the Khmer Rouge regime, during a tour of the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, formerly the regime's notorious S-21 prison,  in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 01 Nov 2010
    US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton looks at a wall of faces of those killed by the Khmer Rouge regime, during a tour of the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, formerly the regime's notorious S-21 prison, in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 01 Nov 2010
    Robert Carmichael

    U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has thrown her support behind the U.N. human rights office in Cambodia, and also addressed the issue of Cambodia's debt to the United States during a visit to Phnom Penh as part of two-week long tour of Asia.

    The Cambodian government wants the United Nations to close its human rights office here.  But Secretary Clinton defended the office Monday, calling it "a valuable resource."

    "It provides technical assistance to the government," Clinton said. "It also works with these NGOs [non-governmental organizations] that are in Cambodia, both Cambodian NGOs and international NGOs on a variety of concerns including human rights, trafficking in persons, and the rule of law." Clinton added, "So, the High Commissioner's office is active in ways that we think are very complementary to what the Cambodian government is committed to doing, and we think the work is important and we would like to see it continue."

    While she endorsed the work of the U.N.-sponsored tribunal prosecuting the leaders of the Khmer Rouge, Clinton said her immediate priority is to ensure there is sufficient money to fund the next trial.  This second case of four Khmer Rouge leaders is set to begin next year, and she estimates will cost up to 50 million dollars to complete.

    But the Cambodian government has said it wants the international tribunal to shut down after that case and not pursue more. Clinton noted the government's concerns about political instability should the tribunal prosecute more cases, a concern many human rights groups do not share.

    "That is something that we in the international community should consult closely with the Cambodian government on," said Clinton.  "But the first piece of business is getting 002 to trial. And I want to see that happen as soon as possible.  So I will be personally reaching out to help raise the money to get that done," she said.

    More than a million Cambodians died of starvation, illness and execution when the Khmer Rouge ruled the country in the 1970s.  The tribunal concluded its case, against a prison commandant, a few months ago.  

    Clinton indicated the United States is willing to consider different options regarding $445 million that Cambodia owes it from the 1970s. The debt stemmed from U.S. support for the Lon Nol government, which ran Cambodia from 1970 to 1975 before the nation fell to the Khmer Rouge.

    Phnom Penh says the debt should be canceled.  But talks on resolving the debt have not been held since 2006.

    "We have agreed that the United States will send a team of experts as soon as possible to resume discussions over ways to settle this debt," said Clinton. "The discussions as you know ended in 2006. We very much want to see this matter resolved."

    She added, however, that the United States would be interested in seeing the money spent in Cambodia on improving education or environmental protection, instead of taking a direct repayment.   

    You May Like

    Native Americans Ask: What About Our Water Supply?

    They say they have been facing a dangerous water contaminant for decades - uranium – but the problem has received far less attention than water contamination by lead in Flint, Michigan

    Pakistan's President Urges Nation Not to Celebrate Valentine's Day

    Mamnoon Hussain criticizes Valentine's Day, which falls on Sunday this year, as a Western import that threatens to undermine the Islamic values of Pakistan

    Mother of IS Supporter: Son Was Peaceful, 'Role Model'

    Somali-American Abdirizak Mohamed Warsame pleaded guilty Thursday to charges of conspiring to provide material support to Islamic State militants

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortagei
    X
    February 12, 2016 7:31 PM
    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortage

    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Gateway to Mecca: Historical Old Jeddah

    Local leader Sami Nawar's family has been in the Old City of Jeddah for hundreds of years and takes us on a tour of this ancient route to Mecca, also believed to be the final resting place of Adam's wife, Eve.
    Video

    Video New Technology Aims to Bring Election Transparency to Uganda

    A team of recent graduates from Uganda’s Makerere University has created a mobile application designed to help monitor elections and expose possible rigging. The developers say the app, called E-Poll, will make Uganda's democratic process fairer. From Kampala, VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
    Video

    Video As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Fill

    Aid workers on the Greek island of Lesbos say they are struggling to bury the increasing number of bodies of refugees that have been recovered or washed up ashore in recent months.  The graveyards are all full, they say, yet as tens of thousands of people clamor to get out of Syria, it is clear refugees will still be coming in record numbers. For VOA, Hamada Elrasam reports from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video Russia Bristles at NATO Expansion in E. Europe

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is meeting Friday with the head of NATO after the Western military alliance and the United States announced plans for the biggest military build-up in Europe since the Cold War. Russia has called NATO's moves a threat to stability in Europe. But NATO says the troop rotations and equipment are aimed at reassuring allies concerned about Russia as VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video To Fight Zika, Scientists Target Mosquitoes

    Mosquitoes strike again. The Zika virus outbreak is just the latest headline-grabbing epidemic carried by these biting pests, but researchers are fighting back with new ways to control them. VOA's Steve Baragona takes a look.
    Video

    Video Mosul Refugees Talk About Life Under IS

    A top U.S. intelligence official told Congress this week that a planned Iraqi-led operation to re-take the city of Mosul from Islamic State militants is unlikely to take place this year. IS took over the city in June 2014, and for the past year and a half, Mosul residents have been held captive under its rule. VOA's Zana Omar talked to some families who managed to escape. Bronwyn Benito narrates his report.
    Video

    Video Scientists Make Progress Toward Better Diabetes Treatment, Cure

    Scientists at two of the top U.S. universities say they have made significant advances in their quest to find a more efficient treatment for diabetes and eventually a cure. According to the International Diabetes Federation, the disease affects more than 370 million people worldwide. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video NATO to Target Migrant Smugglers

    NATO has announced plans to send warships to the Aegean Sea to target migrant smugglers in the alliance's most direct intervention so far since a wave of people began trying to reach European shores.
    Video

    Video Russia's Catholics, Orthodox Hopeful on Historic Pope-Patriarch Meeting

    Russia's Catholic minority has welcomed an historic first meeting Friday in Cuba between the Pope and the Patriarch of Russia's dominant Orthodox Church. The Orthodox Church split with Rome in 1054 and analysts say politics, both church and state, have been driving the relationship in the centuries since. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Used Books Get a New Life on the Streets of Lagos

    Used booksellers are importing books from abroad and selling them on the streets of Africa's largest city. What‘s popular with readers may surprise you. Chris Stein reports from Lagos.
    Video

    Video After NH Primaries All Eyes on South Carolina

    After Tuesday's primary in New Hampshire, US presidential candidates swiftly turned to the next election coming up in South Carolina. The so-called “first-in-the-South” poll may help further narrow down the field of candidates. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video Smartphone Helps Grow Vegetables

    One day, you may be using your smartphone to grow your vegetables. A Taipei-based company has developed a farm cube — a small, enclosed ecosystem designed to grow plants indoors. The environment inside is automatically adjusted by the cube, but it can also be controlled through an app. VOA's Deborah Block has more on the gardening system.
    Video

    Video Exhibit Turns da Vinci’s Drawings Into Real Objects

    In addition to being a successful artist, Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci designed many practical machines, some of which are still in use today, although in different forms. But a number of his projects were never realized — until today. VOA’s George Putic reports.