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Thursday, February 21, 2008

Cambodia builds two statues for famous monk and musician

PHNOM PENH, Feb. 21 (Xinhua) -- The city government of Phnom Penh on Thursday held inauguration ceremony for the statues of a famous monk called Choun Nat and a musician called Krom Ngoy to honor their efforts and contributions to help the Cambodian society in the 19th and 20th centuries.

"We built their statues to respect and honor their efforts while they were alive in helping Cambodian society," Major Kep Chuktema said while addressing the ceremony.

The statues, which were made of copper and gold, were over two meters in height.

Choun Nat's statue is located in Hun Sen Park and Krom Ngoy's statue is in a Public Park in front of the Cambodiana Hotel.

Choun Nat (1883-1969), was former Buddhism Patriarch, or Chief of Cambodian monks. He is also linguist, poet, writer and literateur.

Choun Nat, who made great contribution in composing the Khmer language dictionary, is known as the most impressive literature and cultural promoter that Cambodia ever produced.

Krom Ngoy (1865-1936), was a musician for Tro-Ou, which is a kind of Khmer musical instrument.

He played Tro-Ou to educate people about everyday life and morality of Khmer people. His words became codes of morality of Cambodian people.

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Cambodia to deport U.S. veteran for false threat

PHNOM PENH (Reuters) - Cambodia will deport a U.S. veteran who told journalists that militants were planning a rocket attack on the U.S embassy in Phnom Penh, deputy police chief Sok Phal said on Thursday.

Gerald Forbes, 63, of Hawaii, was arrested for sending e-mails to journalists asking them to spread the warning the embassy would be rocketed, then overrun, he said.

"He admitted he did it because he was angry with the slow reception of his pension. In fact there was no group to commit an act of terror," Sok Phal told Reuters without further explanation.

He said Forbes, in the country on a tourist visa, would be deported and never allowed to re-enter Cambodia.

"He has no money for a flight ticket, so we're arranging the ticket for him," Sok Phal said.

A U.S. spokesman said the embassy "never thought it a credible threat", but riot police were sent to guard the embassy on Monday night, when Forbes said the attack would take place.

(Reporting by Ek Madra; Editing by Michael Battye and Jerry Norton)
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