Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - New restrictions for official travel papers

New restrictions for official travel papers

New restrictions for official travel papers

Government employees returning from overseas postings will now have their mission passports collected by immigration officials on arrival, according to a Ministry of Foreign Affairs letter issued on Friday.

Council of Ministers spokesman Phay Siphan said the confiscations are intended to prevent misuse of mission passports – a separate category from diplomatic passports – by civil servants.

“The seized documents belong to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs . . . and the documents are handed to officials for the fulfilling of their mission, not for their private benefit. In the past, some officials breached the trust of the government,” Siphan said. “I heard that some officials overstay their mission overseas to pursue their own business interests.”

The new mandate will not affect officials’ personal passports. Siphan explained that Cambodian passports fall into three categories: Diplomatic, given to senior foreign affairs officials with regular overseas postings; mission, given to officials temporarily overseas on state business; and normal, offered to ordinary citizens for non-official overseas travel.

Siphan, however, was keen to emphasise that an official process exists for the allocation of mission and diplomatic passports, adding that anyone found to be abusing their travel documents would be punished.

The Affiliated Network for Social Accountability in East Asia and the Pacific’s Cambodia fellow San Chey praised the initiative, saying it would prevent government officials from exploiting state resources for their own benefit.

MOST VIEWED

  • Archeologists find ancient phallic statue

    An archeological team has found a metre-long tipless stone linga (penis) of the Hindu deity Shiva in the foundations of a temple in Kratie province’s historical Samphu Borak area, a former capital of the pre-Angkor Empire Chenla period. Thuy Chanthourn, the deputy director of

  • Man arrested for fake PM endorsement

    The owner of currency exchange company GCG Asia Co Ltd was temporarily detained by the court yesterday for attempted fraud after Prime Minister Hun Sen reacted to the company using his name and pictures to allege his endorsement of the firm. Phnom Penh Municipal Court

  • Sihanoukville authority orders structure dismantled

    The Preah Sihanouk provincial administration has ordered owners of two unauthorised construction sites to immediately dismantle them and warned of legal action if the owners failed to comply. Ly Chet Niyom, development management and construction bureau chief at the provincial hall, told The Post on

  • Police seek arrest of Chinese ‘gang’

    Cambodian police remain on the lookout for 20 Chinese nationals who earlier this month posted a video clip threatening to stoke insecurity in Preah Sihanouk province, though the Chinese Embassy in Phnom Penh maintained the group posed no threats to Cambodia’s national security. National Police