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Thursday, December 11, 2008

China-Cambodia Friendship Radio launched

Wang Gengnian (R), president of China Radio International (CRI) and Tan Yan, president of Radio National Kampuchea (RNK) touch the location points of Beijing and Phnom Penh on a map with painting brushes to inaugurate the Phnom Penh China-Cambodia Friendship Radio in Phnom Penh, Cambodia on Dec. 11, 2008. The Chinese-Cambodian joint-venture FM radio started broadcasting on Thursday. (Xinhua Photo)

Wang Gengnian (R), president of China Radio International (CRI), is interviewed by local reporters after inaugurating the Phnom Penh China-Cambodia Friendship Radio in Phnom Penh, Cambodia on Dec. 11, 2008. (Xinhua Photo)

PHNOM PENH, Dec. 11 (Xinhua) -- The China-Cambodia Friendship Radio (CCFR), a joint FM radio service between China Radio International (CRI) and Radio National of Kampuchea (RNK), was formally launched on Thursday in Phnom Penh, capital of Cambodia.

The launch of the radio service is part of the activities that have been designed to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Cambodia, Zhang Jinfeng, Chinese Ambassador to Cambodia, said at the launching ceremony.

With the new radio service in place, its programs will help transmit information and further promote exchanges between the two nations, she added.

Listeners in Phnom Penh and surrounding areas will easily enjoy CCFR programs ranging from news on China and the world to Chinese and Cambodian music programs, according to a press release from CRI.

The CCFR, with a frequency of FM 96.5 MHz, broadcasts from 6 a.m. (2300 GMT) to 24 p.m.(1700 GMT) local time everyday, the release said.

The programs are in Cambodian, Chinese and English, it added.
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Anti-corruption measures needed to strengthen Cambodia genocide court: UN

[JURIST] UN and Cambodian government officials said Wednesday in a statement [UN News Center report] issued after a series of high-level meetings that they needed to address ongoing problems facing the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia [official website] in its efforts to try former Khmer Rouge officials suspected of crimes against humanity by "enhancing its human resources management, including anti-corruption measures." The statement, however, provided few details and a UN Secretariat delegation led by Assistant-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs Peter Taksoe-Jensen cancelled a scheduled press conference [Asia Times report] before leaving Phnom Penh.

In September a New Zealand judge serving on the court warned colleagues and prosecutors [JURIST report] at a meeting of court officials that its upcoming genocide trials "are so important for the people of Cambodia [that they] must not be tainted by corruption." The court has thusfar received little funding from international donors partly due to allegations of kickbacks for positions and other irregularities [Phnom Penh Post report]. Outgoing US Ambassador Joseph Mussomeli [official profile] said in September that the US will begin providing direct financial aid to the ECCC once the tribunal takes adequate measures against corruption .

The ECCC plans to try as many as eight suspects [JURIST report] for their roles in the Khmer Rouge regime, which is generally held responsible for the genocide of an estimated 1.7 million Cambodians [PPU backgrounder] between 1975 and 1979. In June, court officials announced plans [JURIST report] to complete operations a year early because of limited funding but said they would still be able to prosecute all the suspects. Read more!

Golf: Davies grabs opening lead in Cambodian Open

SIEM REAP, Cambodia: Welshman Rhys Davies carded an eight-under-par 64 on Thursday to take the first round lead in the 300,000-dollar Johnnie Walker Cambodian Open and promised to make amends for last week's heartbreak.

Two-time Asian Tour winner Anthony Kang of the United States was a shot further back on 65 while Indonesia's Rory Hidayat posted a 66 to take third place. Thailand's Chawalit Plaphol was in fourth place on 67.

Compatriot Thongchai Jaidee, Thaworn Wiratchant together with Australia's Gavin Flint, Malaysia's Airil Rizman and Korea's Park Jae-bum are bunched together in fifth on matching 68s.

Davies came agonisingly close to his maiden win on the Asian Tour last week when he lost in a play-off to Thailand's Thongchai Jaidee at the Hana Bank Vietnam Masters.

But after his strong start Thursday, with nine birdies against a single bogey, the Welsh rookie is hoping it will be his turn to be rewarded this week.

"I played really well today. I just went out there, got very focus, hit a lot of good shots and was rewarded with a low score today," said Davies.

"Last week was a great week too. But I can't dwell over one little shot which I couldn't control and missed in the play-off. It's a new week, great start and I hope it continues," he added.

Meanwhile, Kang who is seeking to end his Asian Tour title drought since 2001, also impressed by firing eight birdies against a lone bogey to finish a shot behind Davies at the Phokeethra Country Club.

"I'm really happy with my iron shots, my distance control and I hope it continues for the next three days. I've two more events left for the year and I hope to end it well," said Kang.

Thailand's Chawalit also bolstered his chances of winning his third Asian Tour title after grabbing the early morning lead.

"I'm quite pleased with how I've played today. If there's any aspect of my game which I can credit to, it'll be my putting and tee shots," said Chawalit.

Defending champion Bryan Saltus of the United States began his defence with a 72 to end the day in tied-43rd place.

Leading first round scores:

64 - Rhys Davies (WAL)
65 - Anthony Kang (USA)
66 - Rory Hidayat (INA)
67 - Chawalit Plaphol (THA)
68 - Thaworn Wiratchant (THA),Thongchai Jaidee (THA), Gavin Flint (AUS), Airil Rizman (MAS), Park Jae-Bum (KOR)
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