UK Lawmaker Answers Questions on Cambodia

British Foreign Office Minister Hugo Swire, who used a meeting with Prime Minister Hun Sen and Foreign Minister Hor Namhong last month to enquire about the lethal response to opposition protests in January, answered questions last week in Parliament about his trip, according to the U.K. House of Commons report.

Mr. Swire responded to five questions, which were all raised by Scottish Labor Party lawmaker Gregg McClymont, in writing on Wednesday.

Responding to a question about what contact he had with political prisoners in Cambodia, Mr. Swire responded that he had no such contact, but had raised the issue of political prisoners with Mr. Hun Sen and Mr. Namhong during his meeting.

“[British] Embassy staff are in regular contact with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and advocates campaigning on judicial reform issues,” he added.

Asked what efforts the U.K. had made to ensure July’s election was free and fair, Mr. Swire said that the U.K. had pushed implementation of the European Union’s 2008 Election Observation report.

“Bilaterally, our embassy in Phnom Penh [also] worked with local partners on two election-related projects, providing £100,000 [about $165,000] in funding to promote election observation and voter awareness/education,” he wrote.

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