Princess Di’s Brother Shoulders Her Concerns

Earl Spencer, brother of Brit­ain’s late Princess Diana, said Thursday his trip to Cambodia to highlight the struggle against land mines is a debt he is paying to his sister.

“[Diana] was very keen on Cam­­bodia over everything else,” the earl said of his sister, who was killed in a car accident in Paris last year. “I will feel that, when I get on that airplane, I will have fulfilled some form of unwritten obligation to her.”

Spencer, here on a three-day visit for the Cambodia Trust, a British charity that assists land mine victims with prosthetics, called his trip a “personal commitment” to Diana.

“I am not taking up her mantle. This is a private trip funded by myself,” he said. “My sister wanted me to get involved in Cam­bodia. Three times in the last three years of her life she asked me to make a documentary on land mines in Cambodia. I had a feeling of unfinished business.”

Spencer was the guest of honor Thursday at a ceremony for students graduating from a three-year course in artificial limb-fitting.

Princess Diana was scheduled to visit in March of last year be­fore the British Foreign Ministry advised against the trip, citing security concerns.

Spencer said land mines re­mained at the forefront of Diana’s concerns.

“Land mines were one of her concerns at the end of her life,” he told reporters.

“It made sense to come here with the problems there are. This is a personal thing. I’m sincere in wanting to help the Cambodia Trust.”

While he did not clarify his future role, he stressed the need for public attention.

It is estimated up to 6 million land mines are scattered across Cambodia.

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