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Cambodia, Azerbaijan ink deal on diplomat visa waiver

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Cambodia’s foreign ministry secretary of state Chem Widhya and Azeri deputy foreign minister Elnur Mammadov in Baku on June 1. MFAIC

Cambodia, Azerbaijan ink deal on diplomat visa waiver

Cambodia and Azerbaijan have signed a visa exemption agreement for diplomatic passport holders, paving the way for further enhancing bilateral cooperation between the two countries.

Chem Widhya, secretary of state at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, signed the agreement while leading a delegation to attend the third round of bilateral consultations between the two nations in the Azeri capital Baku on June 1.
Widhya reportedly received a warm welcome from Azeri deputy foreign minister Elnur Mammadov.

According to the foreign ministry’s June 3 statement, the three rounds of bilateral talks are the by-product of the official visit of Prime Minister Hun Sen to Azerbaijan in 2014.

Cambodian and Azeri diplomats had extensively discussed upgrading relations between the two countries and exchanged views on regional and international issues while setting out a roadmap for future cooperation to advance ties in potential areas of common interest for the mutual benefit of both sides.

“The meeting culminated in the signing of the agreement on visa exemptions for holders of diplomatic passports, which paves the way for further enhancing bilateral diplomatic cooperation,” said the statement.

Widhya also paid a courtesy call to Hikmet Hajiyev, foreign policy adviser to Azeri President Ilham Aliyev that same day to discuss mutual interests and improving bilateral ties.

Mammadov, the Azeri deputy foreign minister, tweeted on June 1 that he was pleased to host Widhya for the third round of political consulations in Baku.

“We discussed our priorities as chair of #NAM [Azerbaijan] and #ASEAN [Cambodia] and we signed a visa exemption agreement for diplomatic passport holders,” Mammadov wrote, referring to the Non-Aligned Movement.

NAM, which Azerbaijan currently chairs, is a forum of 120 countries that are not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. Cambodia is a long-standing member, with the late King Father Norodom Sihanouk having taking part in NAM’s historic 1955 Bandung Conference.

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