The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MFA-IC) has rejected a report published in the Khmer Times on Feb. 25, stressing that the case would be brought to the court if the newspaper's report is proved unfounded.
"The MFA-IC categorically and absolutely rejects the report published in the Khmer Times of 25th February 2016 saying that 'Cambodian officials are scrambling to deal with allegations of corrupt Foreign Ministry officials issuing the wrong passports for migrant workers to travel to South Korea where they have been arrested for immigration violations,' and that 'A Cambodian monk in South Korea posted a video alleging that Foreign Ministry officials illegally issued service passports for Cambodian migrants in order to work in South Korea after receiving bribes between $7,000 and $8,000," said the ministry in a press release made public this evening.
The ministry has issued, not one cent of charge, hundreds and hundreds of service passports only and uniquely to officials of different ministries to be used for official missions or for training abroad at the official requests made by those ministries, clarified the press release.
MFA-IC went on to say that it has instructed the Royal Embassy of Cambodia in Seoul to thoroughly investigate and report to the ministry the number of workers who hold service passports, and requested the Embassy of the Republic of Korea in Phnom Penh to provide the ministry with the information as well. "The Ambassador of the Republic of Korea has promised to contact immediately with the Korean competent authorities in order to meet the Ministry's request," it added.
"The assertion in the Newspaper like 'Khmer Times' has to seriously check the above-mentioned allegation before its publication. The Ministry will bring this case to the court if the Newspaper's report is proved unfounded," concluded the press release.