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Friday, June 05, 2009

Cambodia and Vietnam to open three new crossings

Written by Chun Sophal


Ministry of Tourism says additional border crossings opening in July will help to boost arrivals, as data shows 34 percent rise in visitors from Vietnam up to April

MINISTER of Tourism Thong Khon said on Thursday that three new border crossings would be opened with Vietnam next month in a measure designed to attract more tourists.

Speaking at the close of a tourism workshop in Phnom Penh, the minister said the three crossings would be at Dak Dam in Ratanakkiri province, Trapaing Srae in Kratie province and Phnom Den in Takeo province.

"We hope that the opening of the three new border checkpoints will help increase the number of tourists coming to Cambodia," said Thong Khon.


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We want the Tourism Ministry ... to re-examine the agreement.

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This year has already seen a 34-percent year-on-year increase in tourists from Vietnam in the first four months of 2009, ministry figures showed, with 100,041 visitors crossing up to April.

In 1998, the two ASEAN neighbours signed an agreement to open seven crossings in total, but thus far just four have been officially inaugurated - Bavet in Svay Rieng province, Prey Chak in Kampot province, Trapaing Thlong in Kampong Cham province, and O Yadav in Ratanakkiri province. The current bilateral agreement permits 150 vehicles to cross these frontiers each day, but Thong Khon said the new crossings would permit 500 vehicles per day.

Cambodian Association of Travel Agents President Ang kim Eang welcomed the news but said that rules on vehicle access between both countries was uneven and required renegotiation.

"We want the Tourism Ministry ... to re-examine the agreement, as now tourist cars from Vietnam can travel wherever they wish in Cambodia, whereas Cambodian vehicles are required to park up at bus stations on the Vietnamese side," he said, expressing concern that the unequal arrangement meant that Cambodian businesses were losing out.
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Lawyer to face bar panel a third time

Written by Meas Sokchea

THE lawyer for Sam Rainsy Party lawmaker Mu Sochua is to appear for a third time before a Bar Association inspection team today to answer allegations of misconduct in connection with his client's defamation case against Prime Minister Hun Sen.

"I will appear before the bar tomorrow," Kong Sam Onn told the Post Thursday. "I received the letter yesterday, but I don't know what questions I will be asked because the letter was not clear."

Kong Sam Onn has already appeared before an investigation panel twice, but both meetings were scuttled - the first because not enough members of the panel showed and the second because Kong Sam Onn objected to the presence on the panel of a lawyer who works for the same firm as Ky Tech, the attorney for Hun Sen who filed the bar complaint.

That panelist, Hem Voun, was removed from the panel and will not be replaced, Kong Sam Onn told the Post Thursday.
Suon Visal, the bar's secretary-general, said he was not aware that Hem Voun worked at the same firm as Ky Tech until Kong Sam Onn brought it to the bar's attention.

Ky Tech said he did not oppose the removal of Hem Voun from the inspection panel.

When he filed his complaint, Ky Tech said Kong Sam Onn was at fault because of statements he made when outlining Mu Sochua's case at an April 23 press conference.

That case stems from an April 4 speech given by the prime minister in which Mu Sochua said he made derogatory comments about her.

Hun Sen has countersued, denying the claims. .
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