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Hun Sen invites UN chief to ASEAN Summit

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Prime Minister Hun Sen shakes hands with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on September 22 at the 77th UN General Assembly (UNGA) in the US' New York City. SPM

Hun Sen invites UN chief to ASEAN Summit

Prime Minister Hun Sen announced to the UN that Cambodia is ready to increase its commitment to UN peacekeeping missions, and thanked the intergovernmental body for its peacekeeping activities around the world, including Cambodia.

The announcement came as he met with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on September 22 at the 77th UN General Assembly (UNGA) in the US' New York City.

“I also highlighted Cambodia's participation in the wider framework of UN peacekeeping operations. Cambodia is ready to dispatch more troops to participate in UN peacekeeping missions.

"I also thanked the UN for its active participation in peacekeeping around the world, including Cambodia,” Hun Sen said in a social media post.

According to the premier, Guterres was very pleased by Cambodia’s participation in the UN’s peacekeeping operations.

“We will enhance solidarity with countries that were hit by crises, including Covid-19. The UN shares the spirit of solidarity with developing countries in general and Cambodia in particular.

"We will also strive to push for international financial reforms,” the post quoted Guterres as saying.

Hun Sen also mentioned the success of the Khmer Rouge tribunal, held by Cambodia in cooperation with the UN. On September 22, the hybrid tribunal delivered its final verdict against the last surviving former Khmer Rouge, Khieu Samphan, eventually serving justice for the victims of the Khmer Rouge genocidal regime.

The prime minister said he himself had been waiting for 43 years for this justice, recalling that 43 years ago, the Cambodian people were deliberated with the help of Vietnam.

The goal of searching for justice is to ensure that such a situation never occurred again, he added.

Hun Sen also invited Guterres to personally attend the ASEAN-UN Summit, which is scheduled to take place in Phnom Penh in November and will bring together heads of states and governments as well as senior officials from ASEAN dialogue partners.

The post said Guterres will consider attending the summit, noting that the UN chief has previously visited Cambodia only as a tourist. Therefore, he would love to return, especially to foster cooperation between the UN and ASEAN.

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