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All religions to curb human trafficking in Cambodia

Apostolic Prefect of Battambang, Msgr. Enrique Figaredo meets Samdech Preah Puth Chey Mony Khim Sorn, the chief Buddhist monk of Phnom Penh city on September 29, 2022 (Photo by RVA News)

Over 1,500 Christians, Buddhists, and Muslims attended the interfaith forum against human trafficking on September 29.

Samdech Hun Sen, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, presided over it.

The theme was "Do not use Cambodia as a destination for trafficking in persons."

"We need the participation of all religions to unite against human trafficking in Cambodia," said Prime Minister Hun Sen.

He said that human trafficking or crime occurred not only in Cambodia but also in other countries. 

"Human trafficking from one country to another is unfortunate for the poor if we do not stop it."

The Prime Minister asked each religion to educate its followers on how to prevent, prevent and use all characters and activities and report such incidents at the grassroots level when they see them.

"Let Cambodia not be a paradise for terrorism and human trafficking," he added.

Interfaith to combat human trafficking was launched six years ago with an idea from Caritas Cambodia in 2016.

The Apostolic Prefect of Battambang, Msgr. Enrique Figaredo, said, "We in all religions pray, encourage each other, and work together under the high presence of Samdech Hun Sen, who has given us the strength to build a society that we are maintaining and protecting by the values of each religion."

On the importance of Interfaith Day to Combat Human Trafficking, Prime Minister Hun Sen set August 20 every year as the date to celebrate this day.

Figaredo added that all religions have 365 days a year to think together and discuss ways to protect human life from injustice but also to live a dignified life and maintain peace, not in trading.

Samdech Preah Puth Chey Mony Khim Sorn, the chief Buddhist monk of Phnom Penh city, said that all religions, including Buddhism, have a role to play in joining the government in educating and disseminating their faithful to understand and prohibit human trafficking, which is a sin.

He asked Cambodian people to think and to love many people’s lives, not just their own families, and not for the sake of abusing others in other people's families.

He added, "If we could do that, our society and the whole world would be at peace with love and understanding." 

Participants at the Interfaith Forum Against Human Trafficking (Photo supplied/RVA News)

According to a report released by Samdech Sar Kheng, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the National Commission for Combating Human Trafficking, after the Covid-19 release in Cambodia, fraudulent crimes in the telecommunications system increased and they took action in Cambodia for human trafficking. This is why the United States ranks Cambodia third in ASEAN, among other countries like Vietnam, Malaysia, and Myanmar.

Human trafficking includes the use of fraudulent schemes, forced investment, detention, torture, and extortion of victims' families.

According to the report, from August 18, 2022, to September 29, the Ministry of Interior received 368 complaints via Facebook and hotline.

There were 249 cases in Sihanoukville (west of the country, about 200 km from the capital), rescuing 361 victims, of which 54 were victims of human trafficking in nine cases with six nationalities: primarily Vietnamese and Chinese, but also Thai, Indonesian, Malaysian, and Khmer.

According to Samdach Sor Kheng, most victims are young people who are proficient in technology.

The Human Trafficking Commission conducted a research study on the causes of human trafficking, finding that 1053 people in 20 provinces and the capital were burdened with family and debt, lacked family and social care, lacked education, and lacked access to information from the government and civil society, played gambling, and used drugs and alcohol. - RVA Khmer Team 


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