More Migrant Workers Returned from Malaysia

Eleven more Cambodians who went to Malaysia seeking work have been repatriated in the past week, according to a pair of statements released by the Foreign Affairs Ministry on Wednesday.

In one statement, the ministry said four Cambodians returned last week and that seven more were being prepared to leave Malaysia soon.

It said all 11 had been working as waiters, laborers or maids.

A second statement by the ministry said seven Cambodians were repatriated on Tuesday.

Last month, officials at Cambodia’s embassy in Kuala Lumpur said they were sheltering some 30 nationals seeking a safe haven from a recent government crackdown in Malaysia on undocumented migrant workers.

It is unclear how many Cambodians remain at the embassy.

A spokesman for the Foreign Affairs Ministry could not be reached for comment.

Prime Minister Hun Sen lifted a freeze on sending maids to Malaysia in January, some six years after he imposed the ban in reaction to mounting reports of maids being abused both by the Cambodian recruitment agencies sending them and their employers on arrival.

However, the government has yet to finalize a new plan for keeping maids heading to Malaysia safe.

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