UXO injuries and deaths on the rise

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Captain, crew ‘abandoned’ S Korean ferry
Justin McCurry

The parents of hundreds of children missing after Wednesday’s ferry accident off the coast of South Korea have accused the captain of the vessel of abandoning passengers after it emerged that he and six other crew members were among the first to leave the ship after it started to sink. The captain, Lee Joon-seok, who is reportedly in his 60s, escaped from the 6,835-ton Sewol at about 9:30am on Wednesday, just 40 minutes after the vessel apparently ran aground and started to list severely. Survivors and the families of 287 people, most of them teenagers, who are thought to be trapped inside the sunken vessel, directed their anger towards Lee, according to South Korean media reports, as rescue efforts continued in the dim hope that some of the missing passengers might still be alive. Local officials said 287 people remained unaccounted for more than a day after the vessel, with 475 on board, quickly sank in what may be South Korea’s worst ferry disaster in two decades. Nine people, including four 17-year-old high school pupils and a teacher, are known to have died, while 179 have been confirmed safe, including most of the 30 crew members, South Korean media said. Distraught parents who travelled to the southern island of Jindo to be near the scene of the accident reacted angrily to reports that the ship’s passengers, including 325 pupils from Danwon high school in the Seoul suburb of Ansan, had initially been told to stay in their cabins rather than head to the emergency exits. A crew member said an evacuation order had been issued 30 minutes after the accident, but several survivors said they did not hear any instructions to abandon ship. There was speculation that the order was not relayed to passengers on the public address system. Some relatives threw water at the South Korean prime minister, Chung Hong-won, during a visit to the Jindo gymnasium. “How dare you come Continues on page 12

Powder rangers
Cambodians ring in the last day of the Khmer New Year celebrations on Wednesday in Phnom Penh’s Russey Keo district.
HONG MINEA

Rainsy courts Vietnamese
Kevin Ponniah and Vong Sokheng

PPOSITION leader Sam Rainsy yesterday said that up to a quarter of a million ethnic Vietnamese living in Cambodia could be granted full citizenship rights via the Nationality Law if his Cambodia National Rescue Party were to come to power. The CNRP president has sought in recent months, through a flurry of letters to newspapers and online postings, to cast off what he calls a groundless “foreign-entertained allegation” of anti-Vietnamese sentiment levelled at him and his party.

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Says many would be welcome
His most recent comments regarding the citizenship rights of some ethnic Vietnamese come after the Cambodian People’s Party-led government announced the creation of two new departments in the Ministry of Interior to control immigration and the issuance of identity documents. The CPP’s platform for next month’s councillor elections also promises to address problems related to immigration and make it easier for identity documents to be obtained by those who require them. The moves have led analysts to conclude that the ruling party is trying to catch up with public opinion regarding long-term unchecked illegal immigration from Vietnam, a hotbutton issue for many who voted for the CNRP – which has talked about the issue extensively, despite it not appearing on the party’s policy platform – at last July’s disputed national election. Speaking with the Post yesterday on the phone from Europe, where he is due to attend a political party conference in the Netherlands next week, Rainsy said he believed there were

around 500,000 people “of Vietnamese descent” living in Cambodia, half of whom were eligible for Cambodian citizenship via birth. “According to me I think that up to half of these 500,000 people of Vietnamese descent fulfil the legal requirement to be considered as Cambodian citizens. So the CNRP , we must treat those who meet the requirement to be Cambodian citizens, as Cambodian citizens,” he said. The 1996 Nationality Law outlines that Cambodian nationality can be obtained by anyone born in Cambodia to foreign parents, if they too Continues on page 2

ISSUE NUMBER 1906

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National
trol immigrants and more effectively resolve the problem of crimes [committed by foreigners] in accordance with the existing laws”. Cheam Yeap, a senior CPP lawmaker, said his party is committed to implementing existing laws and controlling immigration flows “for the benefit of the nation”. “We are the ruling party and the government is paying strong attention to control immigration in order to avoid criticisms from the people and the opposition party,” he said. Ministry of Interior spokesman Khieu Sopheak last week said that a new general department of immigration would allow the government to increase its capacity to process migrant applications with greater oversight from the ministry. Veteran political analyst Lao Mong Hay said yesterday that while it was clear the CPP was “trying to catch up with public opinion” and gain lost votes with the new measures, the opposition was also courting voters – ethnic Vietnamese ones – by promising citizenship for those who are eligible. “They are considering this kind of support [from Cambodian-born Vietnamese].”

garment Some Vietnamese welcomed Stay-at-home strike off to weak start
Continued from page 1 Sean Teehan and Mom Kunthear

were “born and living legally” in the Kingdom. But rights groups say it would be difficult for many immigrant parents to prove legal residence, given the state of Cambodia’s legal and administrative system. In line with the laws, the CNRP wishes to “curb illegal immigration” but from a legal humanitarian standpoint, Rainsy said. “We have to be nuanced [and] make the distinction between people of Vietnamese descent who must be treated as Cambodian [and illegal immigrants]. When the CNRP comes to power we will recognise that right officially.” While many Cambodians are fearful and suspicious of Vietnam due to historical grievances, a feeling “hastily, unfairly and inaccurately” attributed to racism by many foreigners, the CNRP would work to educate the public to respect ethnic Vietnamese citizens, Rainsy says. “We will educate Cambodian people as a whole to respect those people . . . Those who were wrongly considered as foreigners. We must educate Khmer people, these are

Many ethnic Vietnamese live in floating villages such as this one in Kandeang district, Pursat province. HENG ChIVOAN

Khmer citizens as you and I and we must respect their rights,” he said. “But other people who come illegally without documents, we have to deal with them properly and the basis will not be different from [what] Europe or America uses to deal with immigration.” According to Ang Chanrith, executive director at the Minority Rights Organization, most ethnic Vietnamese were born in Cambodia do not possess citizenship, “except those who are rich or well connected”. In comparison to Rainsy’s figure of 500,000, Chanrith

estimates that about 700,000 ethnic Vietnamese live in Cambodia, but he said there is no solid data on population figures or what proportion of the group were born in the Kingdom compared to those “who come for political and economic purposes”. Chanrith said that he hoped the government’s new commitment to improving immigration oversight was genuine, and not just to gain votes. According to its political platform for next month’s council elections, the CPP is promising to “resolve the problem of immigrants, con-

A WEEKLONG stay-at-home garment worker strike over wages began with a whimper yesterday as factories remained closed after a holiday and some workers were ambivalent about the action. A day after the end of Khmer New Year, the official kick-off date for the boycott, steel gates at factories were closed along the typically bustling National Road 2 spanning Phnom Penh and Kandal province. “Do we call it strike or not? We don’t care,” Kong Athit, vice president of the Coalition of Cambodian Apparel Workers’ Democratic Union, said yesterday. “It gives the impression to the owners that the strike threat won’t go away unless they resolve the existing conflict.” The impact of the industrial action will likely not be seen until Monday, when most factories plan on opening their doors after the holiday and the weekend, Dave Welsh, country director of labour rights group Solidarity Center, said. Lacking a specific number, Ken Loo, secretary-general of the Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia, yesterday said some factories tried to open but had too few employees to operate.

“I’d be concerned that there are some workers that did not come back and joined the strike,” said Loo, who also attributed absenteeism to the typical gap between factory openings after the holiday and the return of workers. The strike is scheduled to come to a close on Tuesday, with workers going back to the job on Wednesday after sitting out two days of the week-long boycott in most factories. Reached by phone yesterday, Phan Phavy, a worker at Complete Honour Footwear in Kampong Speu province, said he felt no need to strike since his factory had already agreed to give workers the extra three days off after the holiday. But Srey Neang, who works at Building 13 in Phnom Penh’s Canadia Industrial Park, remained unsure. “I do not know if I will come back on time or wait until the strike is done,” Neang said. “I want to get higher wages and see the court release 21 people [incarcerated during earlyJanuary demonstrations].” Whether workers not showing up for the planned two days will affect factories’ bottom lines, their point will be made, Athit said. “Even big or small effect, it’s [within] our capacity to do so.”

The E Garment factory in Phnom Penh’s Dangkor district remains closed yesterday. HONG MINEA

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

National

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National

Villagers fed up with cop issue complaint
Sen David

Cops, CNRP clash at service
Meas Sokchea

Civil parties

TWO hundred Svay Rieng villagers, tired of their grievances falling on deaf ears and incensed by a recent shooting incident, sought a measure of justice for themselves on Wednesday with an official complaint against their commune police chief. After three years of dissatisfaction with local policing, the Samlei commune villagers were prompted to action during a Khmer New Year party at which commune police chief Ma Sa Thoun’s son, a reputed troublemaker, started a fight, villager Kong Chhorn Pesith, 28, said. “When the villagers were dancing, [the police chief] shot his gun towards the sky to break up the fight and make the villagers afraid,” Chhorn Pesith said. No one was hurt in the shooting, but villagers lodged an official complaint against the cop they said habitually insulted them, responded ineffectively to complaints and served the law according to his own biases. Sek Bon, a village chief in Samlei, said authorities received the complaint and that “local authorities will find a solution”. Sa Thoun, however, defended his record yesterday. “They say that I am a police chief but my son is a gangster. I cannot educate him well, but it is not related [to my work]. I always defend security in the village well.”

HE deputy governor of Phnom Penh’s Dangkor district was slightly injured yesterday in a clash that broke out during a remembrance ceremony to mark the day 39 years ago the Khmer Rouge seized the capital in 1975. Prach Seyha, Dangkor’s deputy governor, was injured in the neck and ear after he led a group of plain-clothed police to seize DVDs that opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party supporters were distributing in Choeung Ek village, home to the most well-known of Cambodia’s Killing Fields. At the ceremony, which was held to commemorate those killed under Khmer Rouge rule, the CNRP supporters distributed DVDs promoting opposition policies, including films denouncing violence in January against garment workers and opposition supporters. The films depicted scenes of the deadly clashes on Phnom Penh’s Veng Sreng Boulevard on January 3, when military police shot dead at least four workers, injuring many more. Other DVDs called for Vietnam’s Phu Quoc island – which is known in Khmer as Koh Tral and which the opposition maintains is Cambodian territory – to be “returned” to Cambodia. Shortly after the clash, Dangkor Governor Nuth Puth Dara visited the site accompanied by police to arrest those responsible for injuring Seyha.

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Legal group scales down at tribunal
RENCH legal aid association Avocats Sans Frontières (ASF) has discontinued its legal representation of more than 1,000 civil parties at the Khmer Rouge tribunal, according to an official court publication. In its monthly report, dated April 11, the court said ASF was forced to end its official representation of 1,130 Khmer Rouge victims due to “financial difficulties”. “ASF France has no choice but to acknowledge the lack of funding from the international community and institutional donors to support the ECCC [Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia],” an ASF statement was quoted as saying in the report. Nonetheless, ASF – which has been active at the tribunal since 2008 – went on to thank its donors, saying their “supports have been of tremendous importance to put an end to the impunity of former Khmer Rouge high officials”. Some of the ASF lawyers will continue to represent their clients in a personal capacity, the report notes, a situation confirmed by a court official who spoke on the condition of anonymity yesterday. ASF “is not the one that signs the [power of attorney] with the civil parties; it’s the lawyers”, the official said, adding that all civil parties still have legal representation, and even those whose international lawyers are leaving are represented by Cambodian lawyers. ASF did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
STUART WHITE

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CNRP officials and supporters gather yesterday in Phnom Penh’s Choeung Ek village to remember those killed under the Khmer Rouge regime. Vireak Mai

Puth Dara also ordered Phath Phalla, CNRP deputy executive committee president for Phnom Penh, to be questioned at the Dangkor district office. “We will file a complaint [to the court]. We cannot allow people who commit crimes to get away,” Puth Dara said. Phalla declined to go to the district office, requesting the pair meet at the site of the incident to talk; however, Puth Dara rejected the proposal. “There is no problem. District Hall is the place where the state’s work is served. We just want to talk to find the suspects,” Puth Dara said. “If [Puth Dara] wanted those

discs, he should have told me, I would take them for him. He seized them by himself like this and it caused the public to get angry,” Phalla said. Seyha declined to comment on what led to the clash, adding that the CNRP supporters had breached an agreement between the district and the party for the commemoration. Man Phalla, executive president of the CNRP for Phnom Penh, blamed authorities for seizing the discs without first warning them, which he said had provoked the crowd’s rage. “Sometimes the authorities need to show their identity, too. Sometimes [CNRP supporters]

don’t know, they think [the authorities] are provocateurs. So we would like all authorities to wear uniforms,” he said. City Hall spokesman Long Dimanche declined to comment. The CNRP and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party were close to reaching a deal prior to Khmer New Year, following top-level talks. Prime Minister Hun Sen said they had reached a deal, which included calling an election five months early, in February 2018. But Rainsy later said he had not agreed to the proposal, adding that the negotiations were only “80 per cent” complete.

Cambodia seeking arrest of at-large KNLF ‘terrorists’
Laignee Barron and Chhay Channyda

CAMBODIA has issued a warrant for six at-large suspects convicted of plotting to overthrow the government – a verdict rights groups decried as unfounded and politically motivated. The fugitives are among 13 Cambodians sentenced last Friday to between five and nine years in prison for planning hostile attacks against the government via an armed wing of the Denmark-based dissident group Khmer National Liberation Front (KNLF). While Cambodia is seeking the repatriation of the remaining suspects, according to presiding judge Seng Neang, rights advocates maintain that many of the convicted are asylum seekers and, as such, protected by international laws. “If a person is recognised as a refugee or a person of concern, they cannot be returned to a country where they would face persecution or torture,” Phil Robertson, deputy director of Human Rights Watch’s Asia division, said. But the precedent set by the deportees present at the trial isn’t promising. According to Robertson, Thailand already

breached international laws last year by arresting and deporting seven of the 13 defendants – who should have been classified as “persons of concern” by the UN as members of a targeted group. Two of the seven claim they were later tortured, and all of them say they were forced to confess. Three of the remaining fugitives applied to the UNHCR in Bangkok for refugee status, according to Sam Serey, president of the KNLF and a political asylee in Denmark. “I am not worried for myself, Denmark is a democratic country that honours the law. But I am worried about the members in Thailand,” Serey said. He added that his own younger brother, Yin Yav, was seeking refugee status in Thailand at the time of his arrest. For confidentiality reasons, the UNHCR in Bangkok would neither confirm nor deny whether any of the convicted had applied for or received refugee status. But Thailand, which has not ratified the UN Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, has in previous years sent home thousands of Hmong, Uighurs and Rohingya fleeing persecution. The KNLF, rights advocates

and all of the accused – some of whom say they were not even members of the KNLF, but had only attended a nonviolent rights rally – maintain the convictions are purely political and based on fabricated evidence. “The government always picks some sort of enemy, a small group that it can scapegoat and use to smear the opposition with, and this election season it was the KNLF,” Robertson said. “We searched for evidence that the group had any intentions or means of using violence, but if there was any evidence, we wouldn’t be defending them.” Serey maintains that, contrary to the government’s labelling of it as a terrorist group, the KNLF has always been peaceful. “[The government] continually violates human rights through forced evictions and land grabs. All these issues, I and the KNLF revealed to the international community . . . Therefore, KNLF is [the government’s] target to eliminate,” he said, adding that he is appealing to Denmark, the US and the EU to intervene on behalf of the accused. Meanwhile, lawyers said they would file an appeal next week. ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY
BUTH REAKSMEY KONGKEA

Cambodian deminers prepare some of several hundred artillery shells and unexploded ordinance (UXO) for demolition near Siem Reap. aFp

UXO injuries, deaths on the rise
Maria Wirth

FORTY people were injured or killed by landmines and other unexploded ordnance (UXO) in the first two months of 2014, a figure nearly twice as high as that recorded in the same period last year, a recent report from the Cambodian Mine Action Centre shows. In its report, CMAC recorded six deaths and 34 injuries in January and February this year, a 90 per cent increase in casualties from the first two months of 2013, which saw two people killed and 19 injured. Heng Ratana, director-

general of CMAC, ascribed the increase in casualties to recent explosions each involving multiple victims, noting that the number of actual explosions in the two-month period remained roughly the same. According to Ratana, incidents mostly – and increasingly – injured children. “They collect the explosives and play with them,” he said. Last month, two children were injured along with their aunt when they stepped on a landmine in Banteay Meanchey province, near the Thai border. In February, three children were killed when they

tampered with an unexploded 60-millimetre rocket that they found near their village in Kampong Chhnang province while herding cattle. Cambodia’s UXO was left behind after decades of war, and the Kingdom’s northwestern provinces – such as Battambang, Oddar Meanchey, Banteay Meanchey and Preah Vihear – remain the country’s most dangerous areas for UXO, according to the Cambodia Mine Victims Information System. UXO claimed the lives of 22 people in 2013, down from 43 in 2012.

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National

In brief
A CAMBODIAN man in Sihanoukville was charged yesterday for allegedly using a wooden stick to assault a US marine for reportedly flirting with his girlfriend, a court official said. Preah Sihanouk Provincial Court deputy prosecutor Huoth Vichet said yesterday that suspect Nget Saroeun, 26, had been charged with an aggravated act of intentional violence and put under pre-trial detention. If found guilty, he could be sentenced to between two and five years’ prison. Provincial police chief Tak Vantha said that marine Guillermo Gonzalez, 24 – who was assigned to a visiting US navy vessel at Cambodia’s Ream Naval Base – was at a restaurant at around 3am on Tuesday when Saroeun and his girlfriend came in. “[Saroeun] brought his English girlfriend to eat food at the restaurant, and the US marine flirted with her, and hugged and kissed her.” An argument ensued, Vantha said, which led to the alleged assault that left Gonzalez with a roughly 10-centimetre gash to the forehead. PHAK SEANGLY

Cambodian charged in assault on US marine

Land activists ‘under threat’
Amelia Woodside and Khouth Sophak Chakrya

pOLICE BLOttER
Fruit vendors dice it up in brutal cleaver fight
FREE-MARKET competition turned into a market free-forall in Phnom Penh’s Prampi Makara district on Friday. According to police, two fruit vendors were arguing when one grabbed a cleaver and took a swing at the other. He missed, but the intended victim grabbed the cleaver and allegedly hit his attacker in the head and arm, injuring the man’s nephew in the process. Police apprehended the vendor, but could not offer a motive. Onlookers, however, said the two often vied for customers. NOKORWAT

Trial of ‘the 23’ delayed from today to next week

AMBODIAN land advocates face some of the most threatening and deadly working conditions in the world, according to a new report by UKbased environmental watchdog Global Witness. Since 2002, 908 reported killings linked to land activism have occurred across 35 countries – with 13 taking place in Cambodia – and that number has been climbing in the last four years, the report, Deadly Environment, reveals. Land disputes, shrinking natural resources and a culture of impunity are tied to the reported intimidation and killings of land activists recorded in the Kingdom, said Alice Harrison, a communications adviser for Global Witness. “Of the reported killings that our research uncovered, the highest concentration in Southeast Asia was in the Philippines, with 67. But with 13 killings, Cambodia’s death toll is certainly significant, behind Thailand with 16,” Harrison said, adding that Cambodia ranked ninth of 35 countries.

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A mourner attends a memorial service for slain forest activist Chut Wutty in Prey Veng province in April 2013. heng chivoan

Violence stemming from land disputes in Cambodia is highlighted in the report with the inclusion of 14-year-old Heng Chantha’s death in Kratie province in 2012. The girl was shot by security forces during an eviction mere weeks after the slaying of prominent antilogging activist Chut Wutty. But the cycle of violence will continue unabated as long as senior politicians keep being linked to logging cartels, warned Preap Kol, executive director of Transparency International Cambodia.

“Corrupt land dealings can be traced back to our politicians and our military officials . . . This will keep happening until a real commitment is made to end this cycle of impunity by our leaders,” Kol said. The spokesman for the Ministry of Land Management, Beng Hong Socheat Khemro, and military police spokesman Kheng Tito could not be reached for comment yesterday, but Ministry of Interior spokesman Khieu Sopheak downplayed the report’s findings and allegations.

“I think that environmentalists and land defenders are not under threat in Cambodia, and the report’s link to land grabbing and land disputes [and] companies [being related] to the killing and intimidation of environmentalists is not true,” Sopheak said. However, it was the fatal shooting of Wutty – one of the most high-profile killings of an activist in Cambodia since unionist Chea Vichea was slain in 2004 – that inspired Global Witness to investigate the realities land activists face on the ground in Cambodia. Chut Wutty, one of Cambodia’s most outspoken activists against illegal logging, was shot dead on April 26, 2012, after military police stopped his vehicle in Koh Kong province. While the details leading up to Wutty’s death remain unclear, it is known that he was shot by a military police officer while investigating a company’s involvement in illegal logging. Wutty’s son, Chheuy Oddom Rasmey, said he is not scared of the threats and harassment and will continue his father’s efforts “to protect the environment and natural resources of Cambodia for the future”.

Alleged thief’s reliable factory score at an end

POLICE in Kampong Cham’s Ponhea Krek district arrested a man on Thursday for allegedly treating a local factory like a personal ATM. Police said the man sneaked into the factory to steal some batteries and some rubber, but was apprehended by security guards. After being handed over to police, the man reportedly confessed, saying he had robbed the factory a few times already, always returning when broke. NOKORWAT

JUDGES at Phnom Penh Municipal Court will hear the cases of 23 people arrested in early January during garment sector demonstrations next week, rather than today, according to labour and human rights groups. Dave Welsh of Solidarity Center and Am Sam Ath of Licadho both said yesterday those arrested during violent demonstrations on January 2 and 3 – the latter of which ended with at least four shot dead by security forces – will be tried in separate courtrooms on April 25 on charges ranging from inciting violence to aggravated intentional violence. Court officials couldn’t be reached. SEAN
TEEHan and Chhay Channyda

Security guard injured after shocked outburst

Brands ‘violating contract rights’
Alice Cuddy

EXCESSIVE use of short-term contracts continues to impede progress in Cambodia’s garment sector, with major brands still sourcing from factories violating the statutory two-year limit on temporary employment, labour rights groups have warned. According to a report released last week by the Worker Rights Consortium (WRC), the widespread practice of employing regular, full-time staff under fixed-duration contracts (FDCs) is partly responsible for the unrest that has marred the sector. “The Cambodian garment industry’s shift to FDCs as its standard employment arrangement helped set the stage for this crisis,” it says, alluding to a spate of

strikes that culminated in deadly clashes in January. The report urges brands and the Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia (GMAC) to heed a WRC-commissioned report from 2011, which called for FDCs to be given only to temporary staff. According to a 2012-2013 WRC survey of 127 Cambodian factories, which supply to buyers including H&M and Puma, most plant owners employ most or all of their workers on FDCs. “It is the biggest illegality [in the garment industry] and all brands, factories [and] GMAC are well aware of it,” Dave Welsh, country director of Solidarity Center, said. FDCs are used against union leaders, women in need of maternity leave and to

avoid paying seniority bonuses, he said. In the report, the WRC said GMAC has gone to “reckless and high-handed” efforts to expand the use of short-term contracts, having “adopted the position that the law allows unlimited serial use of FDCs”. “[GMAC] has attempted to undermine the country’s leading industrial dispute resolution body [the Arbitration Council],” the report said. By doing so, GMAC “sabotages efforts” to improve labour relations in the garment sector “in order to overturn existing legal jurisprudence on use of FDCs”. Ken Loo, GMAC secretary-general, said he would support the Arbitration Council’s ruling on FDCs if it was handed down by a court.

AN INEXPLICABLE fight in Phnom Penh’s Daun Penh district wounded a security guard on Wednesday. According to police, a local man had been drinking with friends when he spied the sleeping sentry. The man grabbed the guard’s baton and hit him on the leg, prompting the exclamation “Are you crazy?” Offended, the drunk went home, grabbed a cleaver and returned, allegedly striking the guard in the jaw and leg. The suspect fled, but was caught by patrolling cops. RASMEI KAMPUCHEA

Suspected dealer can’t remember suppliers

Road accidents kill 38 over Khmer New Year
Khoun Leakhana

TRAFFIC accidents killed 38 people over Khmer New Year, with a further 306 injured, officials said yesterday. National Police spokesman Kirth Chantharith said that between Monday and Wednesday, 148 traffic accidents were recorded across the country. “Eighty per cent of the victims did not wear helmets,” he said, adding that failure to abide by traffic rules was the main cause of accidents. Chantharith said that there were 11 fewer traffic fatalities this Khmer New Year than in the previous one, while there were 32 more accidents. “We noticed that many traffic accidents happened in Banteay Meanchey, Kampong Cham, Kampong Chhnang, Kampot, Takeo and Battambang provinces,” while few occurred on the busy National Road 6 that

leads to Siem Reap, he said. Preap Chanvibol, director of the land transport department at the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, said young people are most at risk of accidents. “The people who are easily hurt by accidents are motorbike drivers, cyclists, pedestrians and most of them are youths,” he said. Seurn Sareurn, deputy director of land traffic in the municipality of Phnom Penh, said speed and drink driving are his main causes for concern. “Many traffic accidents have happened on National roads 1 and 5 and on Phnom Penh’s Russian Boulevard.” Fatalities on Cambodia’s roadways increased 3.5 per cent in the first three months of the year compared with the same period in 2013, while road accidents as a whole rose nearly 10 per cent.

KAMPOT town police apprehended a suspected drug dealer on Friday, but were no doubt unhappy to hear that the man “couldn’t recall” the source of the drugs. According to police, the man was suspiciously hanging out on a street corner, and fled when approached by police. The cops chased him down, however, and found five packets of meth on him. The suspect reportedly confessed, but said he couldn’t remember either his customers nor his connection, because they usually did business at night. KAMPUCHEA THMEY

With friends like these, who needs motorbikes?
A NAIVE teen learned a hard lesson about trust in Phnom Penh’s Sen Sok district late last month. According to police, two men in their 20s had been friends with the 17-year-old for a couple of weeks when they invited him to a secluded rice paddy. Once there, the men attacked him with a rock and made off with his moto. Police arrested one suspect the next day, and based on his confession, tracked down his partner on Friday. The moto was returned. KAMPUCHEA THMEY
Translated by Phak Seangly

THE PHNOM PENH POST ApriL 18, 2014

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Sentiment key to new increase in businesses
May Kunmakara

The majority of Cambodia’s of rice is exported annually via Sihanoukville Port in an estimated 15,750 shipping containers.

HENG ChIVOAM

Rice customs fees dropped
Hor Kimsay

HE Ministry of Economy and Finance (MoEF) will scrap customs fees for rice exporters from May 1 in an effort to reduce production costs and boost Cambodia’s competitiveness in the sector, according to a letter obtained by the Post. “[The ministry] has agreed to eliminate charges relating to customs processing fees for exporters of rice in order to boost the rice export industry,” said the letter, signed

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by Department of Customs and Excise officials. The letter goes on to say that the fee changes will become effective on May 1, in less than two weeks time. The government’s changes to the customs tariff scheme have been welcomed by rice industry officials and economists. Kim Savuth, president of the Federation of Cambodian Rice Exporters (FCRE), said the government’s move will help cut production and export costs by at least $15 per shipping container. With about 379,000 tonnes

of Cambodian rice exported in 2013 via about 15,750 shipping containers, the MoEF’s decision could potentially save the industry more than $236,000 annually. “This decision is like an invisible assistant to strengthen our competitiveness and boost our export,” Savuth said. Savuth said all stakeholders in the rice sector, including exporters, millers and farmers stand to benefit from the fee cut. The FCRE president added that gradual decreases in

over-land transport charges between Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville Port were also contributing to the sector’s cost-cutting measures. Srey Chanthy, an independent agricultural analyst, welcomed the MoEF’s decision to eliminate all customs processing fees, saying it will save not only money but time for rice exporters. “It creates an easier scheme for doing business and that is truly a big help in luring more investors to the country,” he said. “The government may lose

a small amount of revenue from fees, but they will gain a lot of benefits.” The move is the latest in a suite of changes to the Kingdom’s customs and export process. In an effort to cut red tape and automate processes for Cambodian exporters, the Ministry of Commerce earlier this year relaxed requirements relating to certificate of origin. Just last week, the MoC also confirmed it was undergoing an internal shake-up to streamline the export process for all industries.

NEW business registrations increased 76 per cent during the first three months of the year, according to the latest government data. Ministry of Commerce figures show 1,066 new businesses registered between January and March this year compared with 606 during the same period last year. Foreign business registration increased 66 per cent to 488 while domestic registrations increased 85 per cent to 578. The majority of new foreign business registrations were from Japan, China, South Korea, Malaysia and Vietnam, according to the MoC report. Garment manufacturing, footwear, agriculture, tourism and food processing were listed as the main industries for new business registrations. The government figures come after the the Asian Development Bank (ADB) earlier this month raised concerns over the Kingdom’s continued political uncertainty and risk of further labour unrest, which the bank said may lead to a dampening of investment. Ken Ratha, spokesman, spokesman for the MoC, however, said the new figures prove there is still strong sentiment among the business community despite the ongoing political stand-off between the ruling Cambodian People’s Party and the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party. “I don’t see any investors or businessmen afraid to start up or expand their businesses in the early months of the year,” Ratha said, citing the Kingdom’s liberal investment climate and reforms to business registration process.

S Reap fish paste production halts over weak demand
Chan Muyhong

ViLLAGers in Kampong Khlaing commune in Siem Reap province’s Sotr Nikum district have halted Kamlearnh fish paste production due to lagging demand, according to the industry’s representative body. Proum Hong, president of Kampong Khlaing Fish Paste Producers Association (KKFPPA), said the inflated price of the product, which is made from local Kamlearnh fish and retails for 20,000 riel ($5) per kilogram compared with 6,000 riel for other fish paste products, led to the market slump. “Some producers have paused

Kamplearnh fish paste production altogether due to the lack of capital and small demand in the market,” Hong said last week. “Producers need money to buy Kamplearnh fish from fishermen to then make the fish paste. From there, the paste needs to be stored for at least six to 12 months before producers can make a profit by selling it at market,” she added. “Most of the producers do not have the capital to produce and stock Kamplearnh fish paste for the storage time and when they do eventually sell it, no one wants to buy it because of its high price.” In addition to dwindling market

demand, Hong said Kampong Khleang fish paste producers also face competition from other, nonKKFPPA member producers who instead use chemicals to speed up the paste’s ageing time. “Other producers do not produce in a traditional way like we do. They put in chemicals to shorten the time in producing fish paste.” “They [other producers] can sell their product in a shorter time period and at cheaper price,” she said, adding that authentic Kamplearnh fish paste makers usually have the recipe handed down from generation to generation. Lach Chorn, a Kampong Khlaing

villager, has been making Kamplearnh fish paste for more than two decades. “The demand for our fish paste is very small. Only those who really like it and know the taste will actually buy it,” he told the Post. Chorn said he has halted his fish paste production and is awaiting a surge in demand before he considers restarting. Kim Ly, deputy director of the Siem Reap department of commerce said he was aware of the challenges facing the fish paste producers. “We have been trying to find funds from donors to support producers who are listed with the association

so they can keep producing, but the lack of capital is still a challenge now,” Ly said. Siem Reap produces about 600 to 700 tonnes of Kamplearnh fish paste annually. Kamplearnh fish paste season runs from December to March. The Cambodian government in February added Siem Reap province fish paste to the World Trade Organization’s Geographical Indication (GI) status waiting list along with 21 other Cambodia-specific products. The WTO’s GI status upgrade certifies the quality of a product and officially links it to its origin, protects it under international law and creates brand recognition on the global stage.

8

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

Markets Business

HE advent of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in late 2015 is not just about setting up free trade zones. It aims to create a single market and production base to boost the competitiveness of ASEAN countries. It is expected to create free mobility of goods, services, investments, capitalisation and skilled labour. Free mobility of labour is a significant element as all businesses and economies rely on manpower. And since the agreements have been signed, the 10 ASEAN members – Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam and Thailand – have tried to create a single clear standard for professional qualification screening to help the free flow of seven key professions plus one sector (hotel and tourism) within member countries and ensure standards of quality. Though the AEC comprises only 10 countries, the total population stands at 600 million – a gigantic market with ample opportunities. Nevertheless each country possesses different scales of economy, business characteristics, laws

AEC integration winners and losers T
ognition agreements (MRAs) are intended to ease the flow of professionals within member countries. To do so, standards of professional qualifications are set so all countries will have the same clear standards. Before migrating to another country, a professional must register to work through the regulatory authorities in that country, pass a professional test in the local language to get a licence and follow other local rules and regulations. These strict procedures and requirements are needed to screen the quality of professionals before entering the country. to see many Thais migrating as our tourism industry is much bigger than those of CLMV. Last year we welcomed 26.7 million tourists, while only slightly more than two million visited Laos and about one million visited Myanmar,” Surapong said. According to Acharn Yongyuth, there is still no clear mutual competency standards for professionals in this sector as several parties are involved with no recognised certified body in charge.

Medical, nursing, dentistry
The quality of Thailand’s medical services, including doctors, nurses and dentists, is higher than many other ASEAN countries. Yet its medical fees are considered moderate or even cheaper than many countries, including Singapore. The earnings of these professionals are considered competitive compared with other ASEAN countries. Thailand has set itself up as a “medical hub”. The large number of foreign patients has boosted medical tourism. On top of that, a number of Thai physicians and nurses working abroad have been lured back home. BANGKOK POST

Hotels and tourism
The integration of the ASEAN Economic Community in late 2015 is not just about setting up free trade zones. It aims for a single market and production base to bolster the countries’ competitiveness. BANGKOK POST

and regulations, cultures, languages and customs. Based on research by the Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI), 50 per cent of the gross domestic product of countries such as Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines comes from a service sector. However, half the GDP of Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam (CLMV) and

Thailand comes from the agricultural sector.

Labour mobility
For skilled labour mobility within the AEC states, based on industry’s experts and academics, Thailand has advantages over several of the other member countries, such as better education, good infrastructure and living conditions as well as higher salaries and

remunerations. “All these positive factors are likely to keep talented Thai professionals at home,” TDRI research director Yongyuth Chalamwong said. There is also the possibility of semi-skilled and low-skilled labour from CLMV seeking work in Thailand to meet demand for lower-level tourism jobs.

Regulations and barriers
Under the AEC, mutual rec-

Within ASEAN, Thailand is considered the best in hotel and tourism services. Surapong Techaruvichit, president of the Thai Hotels Association, said Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia are tourism leaders among ASEAN members. But demand for professionals in this sector in CLMV is high and there is a high chance that Thai professionals will migrate to these countries as many are offering high remuneration, particularly Myanmar. “However, we don’t expect

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

Business

9

Cambodia airline eyes record year
Cambodia’s commercial aviation market is small, but growing at the fastest pace of all its ASEaN counterparts. While there have been many who tried and failed in the past to establish a long-term national flag carrier, none apart from Cambodia Angkor Air (CAA) have been able to retain their foothold in the tiny marketplace. This week CEO of Cambodia Angkor Air, Trinh Hong Quang, speaks exclusively to the Post’s Eddie Morton about the airline’s monopoly over Cambodia’s aviation market, how the company struggled through its formative years, competition and what’s on for 2014. How are CAA’s passenger numbers performing? At the moment, it is safe to say we doubled our passenger numbers in 2013 compared with 2012. But you know, when we initially started CAA in 2009, it was not easy especially during the first couple of years. I can say that CAA is on the right track financially, and we are extourists visiting Angkor Wat. I believe this market will only further develop over the next 10 years. This is a massive market for us. Also, this year we will start new destinations in Japan and Singapore, both focused on getting tourists to Angkor Wat. We have conducted conversations about these new destinations and they are in our 2014 plan. What else is on for 2014?
CEO of Cambodia Angkor Air, the Kingdom’s only national domestic and international carrier, Trinh Hong Quang. VIREAK MAI

CAA offers a business class service. How is that performing? Now is not the right time to concentrate on business class services. The Cambodia market is primarily a tourists market and like other developing nations such as Vietnam and Laos, Cambodia still does not have a large contingent of business passengers travelling on a regular enough basis. So now we are focusing on our tourist market and maybe five more years down the line we will look more closely at business class. What are your views on Cambodia’s aviation sector? What needs to change? The only priority for the aviation industry is to boost the Kingdom’s economy via tourism. That in turn will boost the aviation sector. Angkor Wat is a huge market for Cambodian aviation and making it easier to travel there is very important. If we can improve transport infrastructure within the country, this will certainly benefit tourism numbers. For example, the airports are very limited, so aviation development is limited.

Both domestic and international competition is looming. Is CAA ready? This is true. Royal Group and Philippine Airlines plan to launch another national carrier, Cambodia Airlines. I think today the world is a very small place and it’s silly to think we can avoid competition. Competition is a very good thing. Even in the face of fierce competition, CAA is ready to take on its competitors both domestically and internationally. The ASEAN Open Skies policy will free up the region’s airspace for all regional carriers to fly across borders from 2015 with little to no barriers. We’re ready to face this and we will try our best. I can say that if five years ago Open Skies was being rolled out, CAA would not have been in a position to survive. CAA was weak. But after five years of operating and increasing our business, we have positioned our self – along with our partner Vietnam Airlines – to be competitive when this situation arises. We are ready. This interview has been edited for length and clarity

pecting positive passenger and financial growth figures again this year. What were the challenges you faced during those first few years? The biggest of them all was making people recognise CAA as an airline in the first place. It is not so difficult to have aircraft and scheduled flights, but if no one is aware of our brand or standing in the domestic aviation market, what is it good for? So yes, that was the largest challenge, but we can say now that after those early years, many people throughout the

region now know of our airline. Many other larger airlines are aware of our product and this is good as it means our name is becoming known and that we are becoming competitive. Are you expanding your service to more destinations? We already fly to Bangkok from Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, to all major cities in Vietnam, to Guangzhou, Shanghai and a number of other Chinese cities. The destination we are most optimistic about is China. It is no secret that China is a very big market for Cambodia’s tourism industry, especially for

This year is promising to be the biggest year on record for CAA. We are confident we will carry more than one million passengers for the first time. In fact, we are estimating that we will carry 1.2 million passengers in 2014, well above the target. New destinations and more passengers – will you need more aircraft then? We will add another two aircraft to our fleet, taking our total fleet to eight. Next year, we will increase that to nine aircraft, and between 2015 and 2020, we are confident our fleet will increase to more than 20 aircraft. All the aircraft will be Airbus A321s.

10

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

Markets Business

Google shares fall after profits miss estimates

GOOGLE lost some of its lustre on Wednesday as quarterly results failed to meet lofty Wall Street expectations, sending its shares down sharply. The California tech giant said its first-quarter profit rose 32 per cent from a year ago to $3.45 billion. Chief executive Larry Page hailed “another great quarter”, with revenue of $15.4 billion, up 19 per cent year on year. But Google shares tumbled 2.8 per cent in afterhours trade to $540.49. Earnings per share amounted to $6.27 compared with analyst projections of $6.40. Analysts also expected a higher revenue figure of $15.5 billion. aFp

Weak IPO for Weibo
INA Weibo sold fewer shares than expected in its US IPO, which was priced below expectations ahead of its listing yesterday that takes place after tech selloffs on Wall Street. The firm, often described as China’s version of Twitter, sold 16.8 million US depositary shares, according to Dow Jones Newswires, while a person familiar with the deal said each share was priced at $17. That means it raised $285.6 million before the sale of any additional shares to underwriters. The figures are well below the 20 million shares and $340 million it had been aiming for – reflecting a cautious mood after the tech-weighted Nasdaq index tumbled for more than three weeks. The pricing is at the low end of the $17-$19 range at which the firm had been expected to offer shares. In March, Weibo had estimated the value of its initial public offering at as much as $500 million. The offering comes as Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba – a shareholder in Weibo – prepares its own eagerly anticipated IPO later in the year, which is expected to be the biggest in the tech sector since Facebook’s in 2012.

S

European car market pulls away from crisis
DEMAND for cars in Europe moved up another gear in March and struggling French group Peugeot Citroen did well, trade data showed yesterday. However, the market is still suffering badly from a recent slump. Sales of new cars in the European Union surged 10.6 per cent last month on a 12month comparison to a total of 1.45 million. Sales rose in all countries in March with the British market leading the way, jumping 17.7 per cent, followed by an increase of 10.0 per cent in Spain, 8.5 per cent in France, 5.4 per cent in Germany and 5.0 per cent in Italy. The recovery is broadly in line with general economic data suggesting that the impact of the eurozone debt crisis, and of austerity reforms, is fading as growth and confidence edge upwards. Sales of French Renault’s cheap Dacia cars shot up by half in the month. In the first quarter of the year, sales in Britain rose by 13.7 per cent, Spain 11.8 per cent, Italy 5.8 per cent, Germany 5.6 per cent and in France by 2.9 per cent. French manufacturers benefited strongly from the March rally, and the upturn boosted Peugeot Citroen, which has just announced a new strategy to pull away from deep financial crisis, the data showed. But the latest overall figure for sales in the EU, except Malta, was the second-lowest for a month of March since the current series of data began in 2003, the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association said. “Demand for new passenger cars in the EU increased for the seventh consecutive month, with a rise of 10.6 per cent in registrations,” the association said in its monthly report. This meant that in the first three months of this year, registrations of new cars showed a rise of 8.4 per cent from the figure a year ago to total nearly 3.247 million. Manufacturers in Europe are hoping that, after a fall of the market in 2013, sales for the whole of this year should show an increase. Peugeot Citroen says the market could grow by about 3.0 per cent, while the head of Renault, Carlos Ghosn, believes that a big recovery in Europe is taking shape. aFp

A man passes the entrance of Weibo’s Beijing office on Wednesday.

aFp

PS4 sales going strong

SONY says it has sold seven million PlayStation 4s globally since launching the console last year and admitted it can’t make them fast enough, in a welcome change of fortune for the Japanese consumer electronics giant. Software sales for the console are also strong, with more than 20.5 million units sold as of April 13, 2014. The PS4 is up against Microsoft’s Xbox One, and Nintendo’s Wii U for home entertainment dominance even as mobile devices replace consoles. The Wii U, launched in late 2012, took over a year to sell 5.86 million units. aFp

Sina Weibo – launched in August 2009 to provide services akin to Twitter, which is banned in China – is a leading social media website in a country with the world’s largest population of internet users at 618 million. However, it is facing questions about the size of its user base as well as rising competition from local rivals including Tencent’s WeChat, an instant messaging platform that allows users to send text messages, photos, videos and voice recordings over mobile devices. Ongoing troubles in the Nasdaq – fuelled by concerns

that some tech stocks such as Facebook and Netflix are overpriced – has hit a number of recent IPOs. All five companies that went public in New York on Monday and Tuesday offloaded their shares for less than they had forecast. And on Wednesday, an IPO by Sabre Corp, a technology company specialising in travel bookings, saw it sell 39.2 million shares at $16 a share, raising $627.2 million. That came under expectations for a sale of 44.7 million shares for up to $20 that could have made almost $900 million. aFp

Head of Team-Clinical Quality Assurance
Location:-Head Office Phnom Penh Salary:- Competitive

About us Marie Stopes International (MSI) provides quality family planning and reproductive health services in more than 43 countries world-wide. Marie Stopes International Cambodia (MSIC) is a non-profit social business, working with local partners and the government of Cambodia to provide quality, affordable and accessible Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) information and services. MSIC is part of the MSI global partnership, and works to improve the health and quality of life of women, men, and their families. About the role: The Head of Team – Clinical Quality leads MSIC’s Clinical Quality Assurance team. The Head of Team Clinical Quality Assurance will work with Marie Stopes International Cambodia’s (MSIC) Directors and Staff to ensure that high clinical quality and standards are achieved and maintained across all MSIC service delivery channels and that MSIC jointly delivers high quality clinical training for MSIC and external partners, such as the Ministry of Health (MOH) and private health care providers. Key responsibilities will include:  Ensure the delivery of high quality clinical services by MSIC clinics  Lead the development, review and updating of clinical standards based on MSI global clinical standards; ensuring alignment with Ministry of Health (MOH) standards  Monitor and evaluate adherence to MSIC clinical standards  Promote and uphold a no blame culture throughout the organization  Demonstrate that client satisfaction feedback and the sexual and reproductive health evidence base shapes improvements in clinical services  Evaluate effectiveness of clinical training and make necessary changes to improve effectiveness  Lead MSIC’s clinical quality across the organization including informing and advising the SMT on all matters related to clinical quality  Monitor and manage the budget for the CQA Team to control costs in liaison with other teams.  Coordinate with the Research, Monitoring and Evaluation team regarding the development of any new indicators relevant to the work of the CQA team About you: MSIC is seeking a strategic thinker with demonstrated experience in capacity building and establishing high-performing teams, particularly within Clinical Quality Team. You’ll have commercial and INGO experience with exposure to USAID, Australian Aid or other relevant donors. In return we offer the opportunity to join a growing organization giving choice to women and providing services to the most under-served communities. The successful candidate will be pro choice. Please visit http://www.mariestopes.org.kh/careers or contact our Human Resources Team for a detailed job description. Interested and qualified candidates should send applications (CV and a cover letter), stating current and expected salary to Marie Stopes Head Office, Address: #12Eo, St.41, (Village No. 10), Sangkat Tonle Basac, Khan Chamkar Morn, Phnom Penh, Email: hrd@mariestopes.org.kh, Tel: 023 994 082/083. MSIC is an equal opportunity employer and women are strongly encouraged to apply. Only short-listed candidates will be contacted. Closing date for applications is 25th April, 2014 at 5:00PM.

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

Business

11

Bitcoins spark electric frenzy
Jason Clenfield and Pavel Alpeyev

Markets
Thailand
Thai Set 50 Index, Apr 16 1100

Vietnam
Ho Chi Minh Stock Index, Apr 16 700

N THE five years since bitcoin was created, the hunt for them has consumed enough electricity to keep the Eiffel Tower lit for 260 years. One man’s way around the utility bills: the family power plant. Alex Wilhelm is a bitcoin miner, one of thousands of people who use computers to solve complex math problems and get their hands on the digital currency. The expatriate living in Tokyo has 30 remotecontrolled servers mining virtual gold in an old brick building in the Austrian countryside. His father is donating the electricity, which comes from a water-driven turbine that survived a World War II bombing raid and once powered the village of Tattendorf. While the operation is modest as mining farms go – this year’s yield may total no more than $12,500 – it illustrates a basic point: the race to uncover cyber cash has become so energy intensive that power bills now make it mostly unprofitable. “Basically you’re turning electricity into money,” Wilhelm said. “If the electricity price goes up the math stops working.” The 30-year-old software engineer turned to his computer and with a few keystrokes launched a tour of his mine halfway around the world. A video feed showed rows of circuit boards hanging like bats from metal racks inside a cavernous stone room where he used to play as a kid. “You can imagine if you have something like this at home, your wife won’t be very happy,” he said.

I

Alex Wilhelm, living in Tokyo, is a bitcoin miner using 30 remote-controlled servers as he seeks to find and collect more of the virtual currency. BLOOMBERG

That’s the reason bitcoin miners are scouring the globe for the cheapest power prices. Power consumption has always been bitcoin’s bottleneck, says cryptographer Philipp Guhring. By one estimate, mining has gobbled up more than 150,000 megawatt hours of electricity since the cyber currency was invented. That’s a year’s worth of electricity for about 14,000 average US homes, or more than two centuries for the Eiffel Tower. “Yes, you need the hardware and you need the software, but electricity is the core thing that drives bitcoin,” Guhring, who co-wrote a 2011 paper on energy’s role in virtual mining, said by phone from Vienna. “It’s going to gravitate to wherever electric-

ity is cheapest.” Hence Tattendorf or Moses Lake, or Iceland, where a few wily entrepreneurs are tapping cheap geothermal power from volcanoes to drive one of the world’s biggest mining farms. When bitcoin was created back in 2009, it was intended to be finite, like a precious metal. That helped the term “mining” take hold, but it’s a misnomer. People race with their computers to solve puzzles and reap some of the 25 bitcoins spat out every 10 minutes by an algorithm. The more machines you have, the better your chances are of winning. Bitcoin prices shot up to more than $1,100 last year from about $13. The currency took hits in the last few

months though, after China banned banks from dealing in it and the US government decided to tax it. Another blow came when about $500 million in bitcoins disappeared from one of the biggest exchanges, Tokyobased Mt.Gox, which then went bankrupt. The coins traded at $490 yesterday, according to the CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index, an average from major global exchanges. Even some of bitcoin’s fans say it’s turned into a wasteful arms race. In a blog post widely circulated on Twitter last month, technologist Fred Trotter said mining has become a “black hole of resources”. “The network would operate just fine with only 1 per cent of the current computing muscle devoted to it,” Trotter said by phone from Denver. “It’s consuming resources that should be allocated differently.” Back in Tokyo, Wilhelm pulled up Coinwarz.com, a bitcoin calculator, to show why he’d never use local power. Electricity here, in one of the world’s most expensive markets, sells for 15 times the rate in Moses Lake. If he were running his 10 kilowatt operation in Tokyo, he figures he’d lose about $13 a day after the $67 power bill. Wilhelm’s 60-year-old retiree father is worried the expiration of subsidies in 2016 will force them to shut the plant, an heirloom that’s been in the family for six or seven generations. “It all depends on the value of bitcoin,” the younger Wilhelm said. “If you’re mining at this stage, you’re not doing it to make dollars, you’re doing it because you believe it will go up.” BLOOMBERG

1025 950 875 800

650 600 550 500

955.04

580.47

South Korea

KOSPI Index, Apr 16 2100 1975 1850 1725 1600

Philippines

PSEI - Philippine Se Idx, Apr 16 7000 6625 6250 5875 5500

1,997.44

6,671.18

Singapore
FTSE Straits Times Index, Apr 16 4000

Malaysia
FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI, Apr 16 1900

3500 3000 2500 2000

1800 1700 1600 1500

3,250.47

1,847.96

Hong Kong
Hang Seng Index, Apr 16 25000

China
CSI 300 Index, Apr 16 3000

23250 21500 19750 18000

2750 2500 2250 2000

22,699.96

2,224.80

Japan

Nikkei 225, Apr 16 16000

Taiwan

Taiwan Taiex Index, Apr 16 9000

15500 15000 14500 14000

8500 8000 7500 7000

14,417.53

8,944.16

Laos

Laos Composite Index, Apr 16 1500 1350 1200 1050 900

Indonesia

Jakarta Composite Index, Apr 16 5000 4625 4250 3875 3500

1,271.46

4,888.77

International commodities
Energy
COMMODiTY UNiTS PRice CHaNGe % CHaNGe TiMe(ET)

Cambodian commodities
(Base rate taken on January 1, 2012) (%) -0.71 % 3.64 % 2.22 % 1.25 % 4.00 % 5.50 % -40.00 % 1.82 % 7.06 % 3.33 % 15.56 % 0.77 %

India
BSE Sensex 30 Index, Apr 16 23000 22000

Pakistan
Karachi 100 Index, Apr 16 30000 29500 29000 28500 28000

Food -Cereals -Vegetables - Fruits
Item Rice 1 Rice 2 Paddy Peanuts Maize 2 Cashew nut Pepper Beef Pork Mud Fish Chicken Duck Unit
R/Kg R/Kg R/Kg R/Kg R/Kg R/Kg R/Kg R/Kg R/Kg R/Kg R/Kg R/Kg

Construction equipment
Average 2780 2280 1840 8100 2080 4220 24000 33600 18200 12400 20800 13100 Item Steel 12 Cement Unit R/Kg R/Sac Base 3000 19000 Average 3100 19500 (%) 3.33 % 2.63 %

Crude Oil (WTI) Crude Oil (Brent) RBOB Gasoline NYMEX Heating Oil ICE Gasoil

USD/bbl. USD/bbl. USd/gal. USd/gal. USD/MT

104.25 109.78 4.55 304.33 301.3 922.5

0.49 0.18 0.02 0.28 0.24 0.25

0.47% 0.16% 0.49% 0.09% 0.08% 0.03%

3:07:26 3:06:42 3:07:00 3:06:40 3:06:40 3:07:06

Base
2800 2200 1800 8000 2000 4000 40000 33000 17000 12000 18000 13000

21000 20000 19000

NYMEX Natural Gas USD/MMBtu

22,451.98

29,415.83

Energy
Item Gasoline Diesel Petroleum Gas Charcoal Unit
R R R Chi Baht

Base
5250 5100 5500 86000 1200

Average
5450 5200 5500 76000 1300

(%)
3.81 % 1.96 % 0.00 % -11.63 % 8.33 %

Australia
S&P/ASX 200 Index, Apr 16 5500 5250 5000 4750 4500

New Zealand
NZX 50 Index, Apr 16 5500 5250 5000 4750 4500

Agriculture
COMMODiTY UNiTS PRice CHaNGe % CHaNGe TiMe(ET)

CBOT Rough Rice CME Lumber

USD/cwt USD/tbf

15.44 326.5

0.06 -2.3

0.36% -0.70%

2:19:32 23:35:06

5,454.23

5,103.35

12

THE PHNOM PENH POST apRiL 18, 2014

World
to Anti-Kiev demo held in east after Crews test sub’s Ukrainian soldiers kill attackers limits in
UNDREDS of proRussian protesters staged a rally in the eastern city of Mariupol yesterday after Ukrainian soldiers killed three people during a raid on their barracks. The three assailants were killed and 13 others wounded when around 300 people attacked interior ministry troops in the industrial port city overnight with firearms and petrol bombs, according to Interior Minister Arsen Avakov. After warning shots, the troops fired on the assailants, resulting in the deaths, he said, adding that 63 people were arrested and “Russian cellphones” were seized. No interior ministry troops were hurt. Hours after the incident police were inspecting the site of the violence for clues. White chalk marks circled blood spots, broken glass and a bullet casings. The interior ministry said that additional police had been sent to Mariupol and special forces were helicoptered in as reinforcements. The attack followed the seizure of administrative buildings by pro-Russian separatists in Mariupol and other towns across the restive east of the country. Hundreds of protesters gathered in front of the occupied city hall which is flying a flag in Russian colours and proclaiming an independent eastern state. A local pensioner who gave her first name as Alla said she heard the shooting overnight and saw a Ukrainian military helicopter fly overhead as it happened. “The people who died – we didn’t want that. It was a provocation by Pravy Sektor,” she said, referring to an ultranationalist group that played a core role in the mass protests in Kiev that forced the ousting in February of president Viktor Yanukovych.

H

A Ukrainian MiG-295 fighter plane flies above pro-Russian activists blocking a column of Ukrainian men riding armoured personnel carriers in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk on Wednesday. AFP

Russian propaganda miscasts Pravy Sektor (meaning “Right Sector”) as effectively controlling the interim government in Kiev, further stoking hostility against it in eastern Ukraine. “Our partisans are not armed and would never open fire on people,” said Alla, who denied being a separatist but said she wanted continued close ties with Russia. A little away from the protest, though, was a 19-year-old student named Kirill who said that while he saw provocation at play, he believed it was by “Russian special services”. “They want the population to suffer so there is a pretext to send in the [Russian] army,” he said. He added that most of his friends were pro-Russian. Kiev and its Western allies accuse Russia’s President Vladimir Putin of infiltrating Russian special forces and military intelligence officers

into eastern Ukraine to foment trouble. Putin denies that, but yesterday admitted that Russian troops had been deployed in the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea before it was annexed by Moscow last month, which he had previously denied. Kiev has struggled to reimpose its authority over its eastern industrial heartland. A military operation to oust separatists turned into a fiasco on Wednesday when proMoscow militants seized at least six armoured vehicles. High-level talks aimed at ending the escalating crisis involving the top diplomats of Russia, Ukraine, the US and the EU were being held in Geneva yesterday. Russian President Vladimir Putin left the door open to intervening in Ukraine yesterday in a thinly veiled threat that coincided with the opening of crunch Geneva talks on the escalating crisis.

Warning that the former Soviet republic was plunging into the “abyss”, Putin said he hoped not to have to use his “right” to send Russian troops into Ukraine, just hours after three pro-Moscow separatists were killed in an overnight gunbattle with Ukrainian troops. The violence highlighted the urgency of talks in Geneva, which brought together the foreign ministers of Russia, the US, the EU and Ukraine. The meeting comes after scores of pro-Kremlin separatists Kiev says are backed by Moscow took over parts of the restive southeast of the former Soviet republic. “I very much hope that I am not obliged to use this right and that through political and diplomatic means we can solve all the acute problems in Ukraine,” Putin said in his annual televised phone-in with the nation, in a signal the option was on the table.

The upper house of parliament on March 1 authorised the Russian leader to send troops into Ukrainian territory, a move that shocked financial markets at the time as well as diplomats. Moscow went on to annex Ukraine’s Russian-speaking Crimean peninsula, and now has tens of thousands of troops stationed on the border with its western neighbour. But it denies backing the separatists currently wreaking havoc in the southeast and has warned Kiev’s untested new leaders not to use force against them. “I hope that [participants in talks] manage to understand towards what abyss the Kiev authorities are going, dragging with them the whole country,” Putin said. Kiev launched a muchhyped military operation against separatists earlier this week, but it ended in failure when the insurgents humiliated Ukrainian troops by blocking them and seizing six of their armoured vehicles, to the obvious joy of many of the Russian-speaking locals. NATO promptly announced it was deploying more forces in eastern Europe and urged Russia to stop “destabilising” Ukraine, which has been in turmoil since the ousting of pro-Kremlin president Viktor Yanukovych in February and now threatens to split between its EU-leaning west and Russian-speaking east. Ukraine has banned entry into its territory for all Russian males aged between 16 and 60, the Russian flagship carrier Aeroflot said yesterday in a warning to passengers. “In line with an official order received by the company, all Russian male citizens aged from 16 to 60 will be refused entry into Ukraine,” Aeroflot said, adding that exceptions would only be made in extreme cases. AFP

370 hunt

Captain and crew ‘abandoned Korean ferry’
Continued from page 1

here with your chin up?” one screamed at him. “Would you respond like this if your own child was in that ship?” Another blocked Chung’s path as he tried to leave, saying: “Don’t run away, Mr prime minister! Please tell us what you’re planning to do.” A rescued pupil confirmed that passengers had been told to stay in their seats or cabins after the ship struck what may have been an underwater rock and began to list. “We must have waited 30 to 40 minutes after the crew told us to stay put,” the pupil said. “Then everything tilted over and everyone started screaming and scrambling to get out.” Another passenger, Koo Bon-hee, said

more people might have escaped had there been an immediate evacuation order. “The rescue wasn’t done well. We were wearing life jackets. We had time,” said Koo, 36, who was on his way to Jeju island – the ship’s intended destination – on a business trip with a colleague. “If people had jumped into the water . . . they could have been rescued. But we were told not to go out.” But instead of ordering passengers to leave, officers on the bridge were trying to stabilise the vessel, a crew member said. Lee, his face hidden by a grey hoodie, told reporters at the coastguard offices that he felt “really sorry for the passengers, victims and their families and am deeply ashamed. I don’t know what to say.” He had earlier been criticised after he was seen drying wet

banknotes on his bed while being interviewed by journalists. Kim Jae-in, a coastguard spokesman, said coastguard officials were questioning Lee, but denied earlier reports that the ferry had turned too swiftly when it was supposed to make a slow turn. He also declined to say whether the ferry had strayed from its usual route. The tragedy was given added poignancy by text messages sent by pupils among those thought to be trapped inside the ship. “Sending this in case I may not be able to say this again. Mum, I love you,” Shin Young-jin said. An 18-year-old female pupil identified only as Shin texted her father to tell him not to worry. “I’m wearing a life vest and am with other girls. We’re inside the ship, still in the hallway,” she told him.

Her father’s response, urging her to get out, arrived too late. “Dad, I can’t,” she said in her final message. “The ship is too tilted. The hallway is crowded with so many people.” The Sewol’s wreckage is in waters just north of Byeongpung island, located about 470 kilometres from Seoul. Navy divers tried to enter the capsized ship more than 10 times yesterday, but were hampered by strong currents and poor visibility. Three vessels equipped with cranes are due to arrive today to help with the rescue and salvage the ship. The rescue operation now involves 169 boats, including 26 navy ships, and 29 aircraft, said Kang Byung-kyu, the minister for security and public administration. THE GUARDIAN

A US Navy submersible will be taken past its recommended depth limit in hopes of locating missing flight MH370, Australian authorities said yesterday, after Prime Minister Tony Abbott set a one-week deadline to spot wreckage. Australian organisers of the MH370 search said the device, which aborted its first dive earlier this week after hitting a preprogrammed maximum depth of 4.5 kilometres (2.8 miles), would be taken lower after its manufacturer advised there was an “acceptable” risk. “This expansion of the operating parameters allows the Bluefin-21 to search the sea floor within the predicted limits of the current search area,” the Perth-based Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC) said in a statement. It gave no details on how deep the advance sonar device would be sent. The Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 is believed to have crashed in the remote Indian Ocean after mysteriously vanishing on March 8 with 239 people on board. Hopes for finding the plane have come to rest upon the Bluefin-21 after signals believed to be emanating from the plane’s flight data recorders on the seabed fell silent in recent days before their source could be pinpointed. The submersible is being deployed from an Australian naval vessel for the difficult task of scanning an uncharted seafloor at extreme depths in hope of spotting wreckage from the plane. But the effort that launched on Monday has started slowly – it only completed a full mission yesterday morning – and Abbott said the Bluefin-21 would be given about a week. “We believe that search will be completed within a week or so,” Abbott was quoted telling the Wall Street Journal in an interview. “If we don’t find wreckage, we stop, we regroup, we reconsider.” Both Abbott and Malaysia’s Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein vowed yesterday not to give up looking for the plane. But suggestions have emerged that more sophisticated – and highly expensive – deep-diving equipment may be needed for the challenging search at such extreme depths. “We have to look at contractors, and the cost of that will be huge,” Hishammuddin told reporters in Kuala Lumpur, though he indicated that such concerns were not yet testing the resolve of search partners. “But in any event, the search will always continue. It’s just a matter of approach.” AFP

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

World Jews pray in Jerusalem after Old City clashes
THOUSANDS of Jews prayed at the Western Wall in Jerusalem’s Old City yesterday, after a series of clashes at the adjacent flashpoint Al-Aqsa mosque compound. Ahead of the ceremony, Israeli police blocked access for non-Muslims to the highly sensitive holy site, which is directly above the Western Wall plaza, police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said. Rosenfeld said the move was to prevent clashes, and the prayers took place without incident. Palestinians and police clashed on Wednesday and last Sunday after Jewish visitors were allowed onto the compound, which is known to Jews as the Temple Mount and considered Judaism’s holiest place – the site where the biblical first and second Jewish temples stood. It also houses the Dome of the Rock and AlAqsa mosques, the third holiest site in Islam. Rosenfeld said six Palestinian youths had been arrested in suspicion of involvement in Wednesday’s clashes. Jews are celebrating Passover, a seven-day holiday which in ancient times was marked by mass pilgrimage to the Temple Mount. Muslims are intensely sensitive to any perceived threat to the status of the compound and many believe Jews are determined to build a new temple on the wide esplanade. Jews are not allowed to pray on the Temple Mount. Rosenfeld noted police preparations for the Friday weekly prayers at the Al-Aqsa compound, as well as the Holy Fire rite, which takes place the day before Easter Sunday in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem’s Old City. A spokesman for COGAT, the Israeli defence ministry unit responsible for coordinating civilian affairs in the Palestinian territories, said the Jewish state had given 17,000 West Bank Christians entry permits into Israel and east Jerusalem for Easter events. He said 500 Palestinian Christians from Gaza were also given entry permits into Israel and the West Bank for Easter. Meanwhile, thousands of Palestinians across the West Bank and Gaza rallied yesterday in solidarity with Israeliheld prisoners, as peace talks neared collapse after the Jewish state refused to free longserving inmates. AFP YRIAN troops and pro-regime militiamen fought their way into rebel-held neighbourhoods of the central city of Homs on Tuesday after besieging them for nearly two years. Meanwhile, rebels elsewhere in the country have received for the first time at least 20 US-made TOW antitank missiles from a “Western source”, a rebel official said. The assault on Homs comes a day after the army recaptured the Christian town of Maalula in the strategic Qalamun region and as state media reported the country would soon move into election mode. It follows a UN operation to evacuate some 1,400 people trapped inside army-besieged neighbourhoods of Homs in February. Around 1,300 people, mostly fighters, remained behind. France will table a proposal before the United Nations Security Council authorising the International Criminal Court to investigate crimes against humanity in Syria, French ambassador to the UN Gerard Araud said on Tuesday. Araud told reporters that France hoped to introduce the resolution in the next few weeks, following a presenta-

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Regime launches assault on Homs

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Syrian rescue workers gesture following reported air strikes by government forces in Aleppo on Tuesday. Syrian troops fought their way into the beseiged city of Homs on the same day. AFP

tion to council members of a gruesome dossier containing thousands of photos showing detainees who had been starved or tortured in prisons run by the Syrian regime. Any resolution introduced by France is almost certain to be vetoed by Syria’s ally Russia as well as China. Western diplomats, however, say even in the event of a Russian veto, the measure would continue to pile pressure on Damascus while accentuating Russia’s isolation on the council. Syrian state television said that the army and pro-regime

militia National Defence Forces “have achieved key successes in the Old City of Homs”. Troops were advancing in several neighbourhoods and had “killed a number of terrorists”, it said, using the regime’s term for rebels. Local activists and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed the operation. A trapped activist, Abu Fehmi, said the army was “bombing very, very intensely”. Homs is Syria’s third city and activists have long referred to it as the “capital of the revolution” because of the huge pro-democracy protests

held there when the uprising began in March 2011. Most of the central city is now under regime control. Rebel-held pockets have been under a siege for nearly two years, leading to dwindling food and medical supplies. Activists said they fear that 400 men, including rebels and draft evaders from Homs who had recently surrendered, may be held indefinitely. A rebel official said “moderate, well-organised fighters from the Hazm movement have for the first time received more than 20 TOW antitank missiles from a Western source”, without specifying who had supplied them. The Hazm movement, part of the opposition Free Syrian Army, brings together mainly former army officers and soldiers who defected from the military. “Dozens of fighters have been trained with international assistance in the use of these missiles,” the rebel source said, adding that the weapons have been used in flashpoint areas of Idlib, Aleppo and Latakia provinces in the north. Vastly outgunned by the army, rebels have frequently called upon the West to provide them with specialised weaponry. AFP

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THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

World

Progress reported in Venezuela crisis talks

VENEZUELA’S government and opposition reported progress on Tuesday in a new round of talks aimed at ending two months of deadly protests that have rocked the nation. The government again rejected an opposition demand for amnesty for 175 people arrested in the disturbances. But the head of the government delegation, Vice President Jorge Arreaza, left the possibility open for the future.The opposition formally condemned violence, a key demand of the government. It also agreed to broaden a truth commission probing the unrest. AFP

Algerian poll result ‘foregone’
bDELAzIz Bouteflika, seeking a fourth term as president, cast his ballot from a wheelchair as Algerians voted yesterday in polls that he is widely expected to win despite chronic health problems. In his first appearance in public in two years, a smiling Bouteflika arrived at a polling station in El Biar district of Algiers and waved to reporters covering an election tainted by fraud warnings and boycott calls. More than 260,000 police have been deployed to protect the 50,000 polling booths set up across Africa’s largest country, where 23 million Algerians are eligible to vote in a contest between six candidates. The 77-year-old president, who rose to power in 1999, is the firm favourite. But all eyes will be on turnout before polling stations close at 7pm (1800 GMT) after 11 hours of voting. For Algeria’s newspapers, the outcome is a foregone conclusion. “It’s just a matter of the curtain coming down this evening on a bad taste political drama,” commented El Watan, saying the election itself lacked credibility. For Liberte, another daily, “manoeuvring will start for real the day after the 17th”,

Blue sky thinking

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Female Afghanistan MP is shot in Kabul

A fEMALE member of Afghanistan’s parliament was recovering in hospital on Wednesday after being shot the previous night, officials and her sister said. The interior ministry said Mariam Koofi, a member of parliament from Takhar province was shot in Kabul by a member of the security forces following an argument. It said police have detained a suspect and are investigating the motive behind the attack. But her sister Fawzia Koofi, also a member of parliament and a prominent defender of women’s rights, said she was not certain who the attacker was. AFP

Algerian police arrest a protester from the Barakat (‘That’s enough’) movement, as they demonstrate in Algiers on Wednesday. AFP

with nothing at stake in the ballot itself. Bouteflika faces the damaging prospect of a low turnout, with youth activists and opposition parties loudly calling on Algerians to snub the polls and many questioning whether he is fit to rule. He has been seen only rarely on television in recent months, looking frail, after suffering a mini-stroke last year which confined him to hospital for three months and was too sick to take to the campaign trail, delegating that task to a team

of loyalists. When he last appeared in public, in the runup to a May 2012 parliamentary election, Bouteflika addressed Algeria’s youth to declare: “My generation has served its time.” His intention to seek re-election was announced in February, prompting derision and at times scathing criticism in independent media. However, Bouteflika remains popular with many Algerians, especially for helping to end the devastating civil war of the 1990s. “We are voting for peace,

it’s all we want,” said Khadija, a widow in her 50s, at a polling station in a village in the Sidi Moussa district south of Algiers. Her husband was killed in August 1997 along with nearly 100 others in Sidi Moussa in an attack blamed on the Armed Islamic Group, which conducted a campaign of massacres in its battle against the government, at times wiping out entire villages. There had been sporadic election-related violence in the weeks leading up to the polls. Youth protest group Barakat, a rare public expression of the anger felt by some Algerians towards political authoritarianism, was founded just two months ago specifically to oppose the president’s bid for another five-year term. On Wednesday, police violently dispersed a demonstration the group organised in Algiers and arrested some of its members. Amnesty and Human Rights Watch have voiced concerns about efforts by the authorities to restrict freedom of speech ahead of the vote, while Reporters Without Borders on Wednesday highlighted the difficulties faced by journalists trying to cover it. AFP

Airline sorry for naughty image tweet
S AIRWaYs was forced into a humiliating apology this week after it posted an obscene pornographic image on Twitter in response to a customer. The American airline tweeted the explicit image to an unhappy customer by mistake – but it took the firm nearly an hour to remove the post. The pornographic image, which depicted a naked woman and a model plane, was included in a response to a customer who complained about her delayed flight from North Carolina to Oregon. The picture was accompanied by the message: “We welcome feedback, Elle. If your travel is complete, you can detail here for review and follow up.” The image was quickly retweeted around the world, spawning dozens of spin-off jokes and – eventually – an apology from US Airways. The airline said in a statement: “We deeply regret the mistake and we are currently reviewing our processes to prevent such errors in the future.” The airline, which has 422,000 Twitter followers, said it tried to flag the graphic image as inappropriate after it was tweeted to its account by another user. THE GUARDIAN

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‘Over a hundred schoolgirls still missing’
Funding Opportunities APS-442-14-000001 - USAID/Cambodia’s Civil Society Annual Program Statement
A NIgERIAN school principal yesterday denied military reports that most of the girls kidnapped from her school by Islamist gunmen were now safe, as the parents of those taken voiced anger over the conflicting claims. The defence ministry and the government in Borno state, where the attack took place, said 129 girls were abducted by Boko Haram militants from a secondary school in the Chibok area late on Monday. Defence spokesman Chris Olukolade said on Wednesday that all but eight of the girls were safe, citing the principal of the Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok. “The report from the military is not true,” principal Asabe Kwambura said. She said the information provided by Borno’s governor Kashim Shettima on Wednesday that only 14 girls had escaped their captors was “correct”. The mass kidnap – which has sparked global outrage – came just hours after the deadliest attack ever in the capital Abuja, where a bomb blast also blamed on Boko Haram killed at least 75 people. “For the military [which] is supposed to find and rescue our children to be spreading such lies shows that they have no intention of rescuing our girls,” said Lawan Zanna, a Chibok resident whose daughter was among those taken. Boko Haram has repeatedly attacked schools and universities during an extremist uprising that has killed thousands of people since 2009. The group’s name loosely translates as “Western education is forbidden”. Students have been massacred in their dormitories and bombs set off at university campuses, but the mass abduction specifically targeting girls is unprecedented. Borno’s governor has offered a 50 million naira ($300,000) reward to anyone with information leading to the return of the schoolgirls. Parents in Chibok swarmed the home of the area’s tribal chief yesterday, demanding clarification after the military claim, residents said. “The feeling that the military was in pursuit of the kidnappers kept hope alive among parents,” said one resident, speaking on condition of anonymity. The dubious report that most of the children were now safe “has shattered that hope”, he said. Gunmen stormed Chibok late on Monday and torched several buildings before opening fire on security forces guarding the school. They killed two guards, then forced their way inside, herding the girls on to trucks before driving away. Three of the girls who escaped said they were taken to the Sambisa Forest part of Borno, an area where Boko Haram is known to have well-fortified camps. The school attack and Monday’s bombing at a packed bus station on the outskirts of Abuja have underscored the serious threat the Islamists pose. President Goodluck Jonathan summoned his security chiefs for a meeting yesterday to review the unrest. AFP

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) represented by its Mission to Cambodia is issuing an Annual Program Statement (APS) for the purpose of strengthening civil society engagement in processes that promote democracy, government accountability, and an enhanced respect for human rights. Youth engagement and gender equality are cross-cutting themes that must be integrated into all program activities. USAID/Cambodia plans to fund multiple awards exclusively to local organizations through this APS. For detailed information regarding this APS, please refer to the full version of the APS and its amendments posted on: http://www.grants.gov/. Go to the section “Find Grant Opportunities” and search using the subject APS number. An “Interested Applicants Conference” will be held on April 23, 2014. In order to participate, all interested applicants must register at the email address provided and will be notified of the place and time of the conference. Interested applicants must register in advance by emailing CambodiaAPS@usaid.gov and must provide the name of the participants, their titles, e-mail addresses and the name of the organization they represent, not later than April 21, 2014 at 4.00 p.m. local Phnom Penh time. Attendance will be limited to no more than two individuals per organization. Any inquiries regarding this APS should be directed to CambodiaAPS@usaid.gov

India hits polls in biggest voting day
INDIA hosted its biggest day of voting yesterday, with the ruling Congress Party battling to stem a further slide in the polls against the opposition Hindu nationalists after another week of damaging headlines. Voters lined up in 121 constituencies across a dozen states on the sixth day of staggered voting in the election extravaganza which ends with results May 16. Over 195 million voters were eligible to cast ballots, a quarter of the 814-millionstrong electorate, with the key battleground states of northern Uttar Pradesh and southern Karnataka in play. “It’s a very important election, as it will decide the country’s future, the idea of India and its philosophy,” billionaire firsttime candidate Nandan Nilekani said in India’s IT hub of Bangalore. Nilekani, who made his fortune cofounding outsourcing giant Infosys, is standing for Congress in the city where inflation, corruption and sharply slowing economic growth are key issues. Congress, in power for two terms since 2004, is widely expected to lose to the resurgent opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led by hardline Hindu nationalist Narendra Modi. The 63-year-old barrel-chested leader, chief minister of prosperous Gujarat state in western India, insists only he can revive the faltering economy. A new survey this week showed for the first time the BJP and its allies attaining a majority in the 543-seat parliament. India’s economic slowdown – the economy has posted sub-five per cent growth for two years in a row – was on many voters’ minds. “I’m thinking of voting BJP to help its leader Narendra Modi become prime minster and work for the country as he did for Gujarat,” said Bangalore college lecturer Geetha Loganathan. “I want Modi to be the next prime minister as I’m sure he’ll help youth like me get a job,” added new voter Vinay Kumar, 19, a Bangalore student. Meanwhile, the ruling Gandhi political dynasty has stepped up attacks on Modi. Congress Party president Sonia Gandhi, whose daughter Priyanka and son Rahul are also campaigning, told voters on Wednesday that Modi represented a “dangerous combination of religious fanaticism, power and money”. Vice Congress president Rahul accused Modi of “crony capitalism”. Priyanka, whose recent appearances have overshadowed her brother, accused the BJP of trying to divide the country on religious grounds. AFP

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

World

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‘Red shirt rally will be litmus test’
Achara Ashayagachat

Anwar defender killed in Malaysian car crash

LL eyes will be watching what happens over the weekend after “red shirts” kick off their rally today in support of their embattled leader Yingluck Shinawatra. But it is just one of a number of measures that the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) and the Pheu Thai Party have in their bag if the Constitutional Court or the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) strips Yingluck of her post. The pro-government camp intends to reach out to the world community and international organisations for support. This is where their advantage lies because, in principle, the government legitimately won power and is willing to go through another round of elections to underscore the point. The pro-government camp used the new year break to court the international community with UDD leaders meeting the French ambassador. Last month, Yingluck met British ambassador to Thailand, Mark Kent. In fact, officials from the Australian, Japanese and US

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Thai premier Yingluck Shinawatra is facing a continuing battle for her political future. AFP

embassies have been busy in the past month catching up with people in various provinces they thought might constitute a key line of defence for the Pheu Thai government if something was going to happen. “The foreign diplomats would like to gauge the fighting spirit of the reds in their northern and northeastern strongholds,” one diplomatic source said. Embassies are not looking just at the mood of just people in Bangkok but

are also going to Chiang Mai, Udon Thani and elsewhere. Pro-government supporters are making full use of this development, attempting to win as much sympathy as they can. But reality bites. As things stand, the fight between the pro- and anti-government camps is close. The reds believe Yingluck will not survive but they also cannot see themselves losing. Whatever happens they will not give up. The most likely outcome is there will be no

winners. And that is why the government is keen to negotiate with anti-government alliances led by the People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC). Sources said talks have been tense in the past several months and people were expecting that something would emerge this month, especially as Thaksin Shinawatra has recently signalled a softer stance. He said at the weekend his sister’s government is ready to make compromises. But these talks concern what should happen if Yingluck is ousted. A proposal that no criminal charges be filed against her or her family, no moves are made to seize their assets and the Democrats should return to run in the next poll have come to naught so far. The so-called progressive reds – community activists and independent academics – also insist there can be no backdoor dealings acceptable to them if democracy is circumvented. This is a reference to proposals to appoint a “neutral prime minister” to replace Yingluck. With the anti-government alliance citing Section 7 of the charter to appoint a neutral

prime minister, the caretaker government also cited the article, in an apparent act of spite, to call on the Thai king to recommend a solution. Justice Minister Chaikasem Nitisiri wanted to seek the king’s advice on what should be done if the court strips Yingluck of her post. The proposal drew flak from all sides and is unlikely to go any further. Another tactic that the red shirts are pressuring Pheu Thai to adopt is to have caretaker Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul declare his recognition of the International Criminal Court (ICC) to consider cases about Thailand. A minority of Pheu Thai MPs support this idea as a bluff if the Democrat Party does not agree to run in the next election. The Nitirat group of legal scholars, who formed the group to champion changes to the lese majeste law, has called on Surapong to make such a move. “PDRC protesters could refer to this ICC protective clause if they are prosecuted or arrested, while reds defying judicial activism or a military crackdown could also appeal to the ICC for back-up,” one Nitirat member said. BANGKOK POST

A LEaDING Malaysian politician who gained fame defending opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim in his sensational sodomy trials was killed in a road accident yesterday, police said. Karpal Singh, 73, was killed along with a long-time assistant when his vehicle struck a lorry on a highway in the early morning, state police said. The outspoken Karpal – wheelchair-bound following a 2005 road accident – emerged as a leading lawyer in the 1970s. First elected to parliament in 1978, he was detained in 1987 for more than a year in an opposition crackdown. He later went on to defend Anwar, who was ousted in 1998 from the top ranks of the authoritarian Barisan Nasional (National Front) coalition that still rules Malaysia. After losing a struggle for power, Anwar was convicted on sodomy and corruption charges widely viewed as politically motivated. He spent six years in jail. He later emerged to lead a once-divided political opposition to the cusp of power. Karpal again defended Anwar against new sodomy charges brought in 2008. Anwar was acquitted in 2012 but that was overturned in March in a ruling denounced by rights groups. Anwar, who faces five years in jail, plans to appeal. AFP

Korea, Japan hold rare ‘comfort women’ talks

Captain loses command after Indonesia move
AN AuStRALIAN naval captain has been relieved of his command after his vessel was involved in an incursion into Indonesian waters while on border protection duty, the defence ministry said yesterday. Six incursions took place during Australia’s military-led Operation Sovereign Borders to deter asylum-seeker boats in December and January, leading Canberra to apologise to Jakarta and set up an inquiry. The Department of Defence said navy chief Vice Admiral Ray Griggs made a number of decisions relating to the seven commanding officers involved, noting that more than one ship was involved in each incursion. “The Chief of Navy will remove one Commanding Officer from his command and another will be administratively sanctioned,” a Department of Defence statement said. “The remaining Commanding Officers will be formally or informally counselled.” Full details of the incidents have not been released but local media have reported the incursions took place when forcing boats carrying asylumseekers back to Indonesia. An internal inquiry released in February found the incursions were inadvertent and due to incorrect calculations of territorial boundaries. Griggs said he accepted that none of the commanding officers deliberately breached directions to stay outside Indonesia’s 12-nautical-mile zone. But there were lapses in professional conduct that required action. “Each of the commanding officers conducted these activities with the best of intent,” he said. “However, I expect nothing but the highest standards of those in command. “These actions are not punitive in nature but are aimed solely at upholding the professional standards that the Royal Australian Navy is renowned for and that are necessary for it to undertake its mission,” he added. None of the officers or their ships were identified. Asylum seekers arriving on unauthorised boats in Australia, often via Indonesia, are a sensitive issue for both countries. Under the Australian government’s hardline policies, not only are asylum seekers arriving by boat sent to Pacific island camps for processing with no chance of settlement in Australia, but boats intercepted at sea can be turned back to Indonesia. The policy does however appear to be working, with no boat arrivals since December. The defence ministry admitted in February that the incursions had resulted in a “go slow” in military ties with Indonesia. AFP

China jails blogger in ‘rumour’ crackdown
A CHINESE court jailed a blogger for three years yesterday, state media reported, the first person to be sentenced in a government-led crackdown on so-called internet rumours. Qin Zhihui – among hundreds of bloggers reportedly detained in an official campaign to assert greater control over China’s popular social media – was found guilty of “slander” and “picking quarrels and provoking troubles”, state broadcaster CCTV said. China has said the rumour crackdown launched last year is aimed at maintaining social order, but rights groups have accused Beijing of limiting freedom of speech online to protect the ruling Communist Party. Prosecutors at a Beijing district court said that Qin had “impacted society and seriously harmed social order” by posting a series of inaccurate reports on Sina Weibo, the official Xinhua news agency said. Reports said Qin had run a “black PR” firm, taking money from companies to post comments online discrediting rivals. He pleaded guilty and apologised at a hearing last week, Xinhua said. Separately, Chinese-American blogger and outspoken government critic Charles Xue was released on bail on Wednesday after being arrested in August for suspected involvement in prostitution and “group licentiousness”, a euphemism for group sex. The 60-year-old Xue had attracted 12 million followers on Weibo, and during his detention was shown making an apology on state television. AFP

Thailand charges journos over prize-winning article
TwO journalists, including an Australian editor, were ordered yesterday to stand trial in Thailand on defamation charges linked to a Pulitzer Prize-winning article alleging Thai military involvement in people smuggling. Alan Morison and his Thai colleague Chutima Sidasathian could face up to two years’ imprisonment for defamation and five years for breaching the Computer Crimes Act if the court in Phuket finds them guilty. The charges relate to an article in July last year by the Phuketwan news website, quoting an investigation by Reuters news agency which said some members of the Thai military were involved in trafficking Muslim Rohingya asylum-seekers who had fled Myanmar. “The court agreed to hear both charges against them,” their lawyer Phanom Butakhieo stated. They were released on bail of 100,000 baht ($3,100) each, while Morison was banned from leaving the country, he said. They will return to court on May 26. “I’m shocked that they are proceeding with the case . . . it’s a big blow,” Chutima added after the hearing. Reuters has not been charged over its reporting – part of a series honoured with a Pulitzer Prize earlier this week – and rights groups have accused the Thai navy of trying to muzzle a small media outlet. Media watchdog Reporters Without Borders described the case as “absurd”. “By using the Computer Crimes Act to intimidate journalists, the navy is just making it obvious that it wants to conceal this sensitive information and deter any comments on this humanitarian scandal,” said the group’s Asia-Pacific head Benjamin Ismail. Phuketwan is a small but respected English-language news website based in Phuket. Chutima, who has covered the Rohingya issue in southern Thailand for several years, was also hired by Reuters to work on its awardwinning investigation. Thailand ranked 130th out of 180 countries in the 2014 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index. In December the UN urged Thailand to drop the charges against the Phuketwan pair, warning of a “chilling effect” on press freedom. AFP

SOUth Korea and Japan held rare high-level talks on Wednesday on the extremely sensitive issue of wartime sex slavery, which has contributed to a virtual freeze in diplomatic ties. Kyodo News cited an unnamed government official as saying the Japanese side would indicate Tokyo is mulling an official apology and money for the so-called “comfort women” forced to work in military brothels. Seoul said the meeting between Junichi Ihara, head of the Japanese foreign ministry’s Asia and Oceania affairs bureau, and Lee Sang-deok, South Korea’s director-general for Northeast Asian Affairs, marked the first time high-level officials had discussed the comfort woman issue in isolation. A South Korean official would only reveal that both sides had laid out their respective stances and agreed to meet again soon. AFP

More dead pigs found in Chinese river: report

At LEast 170 dead pigs have been found in a Chinese river, state media reported yesterday – the latest in a string of similar incidents that have raised fears over food safety. The animals were found floating in a tributary of China’s Yellow River, in northwestern Qinghai province, Xinhua said. The discovery follows a series of scandals involving dead pigs in Chinese rivers. Last year 16,000 carcasses were found drifting through the main waterway of Shanghai. In Qinghai – the furthest west such an incident has been reported – “the source of the dead pigs is still under investigation”, Xinhua said. Industry analysts say sick pigs are sometimes dumped in rivers by farmers hoping to avoid paying the costs of disposing of the animals by other means. AFP

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THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

World
Sharks may not be quite as primitive as believed
SHARKs’ long-held status as primeval “living fossils” unchanged since before the time of dinosaurs has been challenged by a new fossil discovery which suggests the creatures have modernised far more than previously thought. Findings by US researchers, published in Nature, describe the discovery of 325 millionyear-old fossils in the Ozark mountains in the US state of Arkansas. The fossils are of an ancient shark ancestor that was just a metre long with tiny teeth, although its bite would give you a painful nip, researchers said. The fossils are the earliest known remnants of chondrichthyans, a group that includes sharks and rays. The ancient shark had an anatomy very different to its modernday counterpart, looking much like an average fish. This overturns previous assumptions that sharks developed gill systems before modern fish. The findings suggest fish are the ones with ancient gill structures, with sharks evolving over time. Scientists have previously theorised that the structure of sharks gills had remained unchanged since the emergence of the creatures 400 million years ago, long before the arrival of dinosaurs. The discovery has implications beyond sharks, with the paper claiming it could “profoundly affect our understanding of evolutionary history”. The support structure for gills are thought to have evolved into jaws in fish, allowing them to hunt, before developing later into landbased animals. The paper states: “The arrangement of the visceral branchial arches, which are part of this support structure, is very similar to that of bony fishes, signifying that the most recent common ancestor of jawed vertebrates possessed some elements that were more bony fish-like than shark-like. “This challenges the longstanding view that modern sharks have preserved an unchanged ancestral condition, and indicates that modern sharks have acquired features stemming from evolutionary innovation. “The findings suggest that bony fishes may provide more clues about our first jawed ancestors than modern sharks.” THE GUARDIAN

Seventy-two-hour party people
People take part in the Thingyan water festival to mark Myanmar’s new year in Yangon on Wednesday. New year celebrations, which last for three days, began this year on April 14 in the four southeastern Asian nations of Myanmar, Thailand, Laos and, of course, Cambodia. AFP

Victim’s parents halt execution at last minute
Saeed Kamali Dehghan

Hen he felt the noose around his neck, Balal must have thought he was about to take his last breath. Minutes earlier, crowds had watched as guards pushed him towards the gallows for what was meant to be yet another public execution in the Islamic republic of Iran. Seven years ago Balal, who is in his 20s, stabbed 18-yearold Abdollah Hosseinzadeh during a street brawl in the small town of Royan, in the northern province of Mazandaran. In a literal application of qisas, the sharia law of retribution, the victim’s family were to participate in Balal’s punishment by pushing the chair on which he stood. But what happened next marked a rarity in public executions in Iran, which puts more people to death than

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any other country except China. The victim’s mother approached, slapped the convict in the face and then decided to forgive her son’s killer. The victim’s father removed the noose and Balal’s life was spared. Balal’s mother hugged the grieving mother of the man her son had killed. The two women sobbed in each other’s arms – one because she had lost her son, the other because hers had been saved. The action by Hosseinzadeh’s mother was all the more extraordinary as it emerged that this was not the first son she had lost. Her younger child Amirhossein was killed in a motorbike accident at the age of 11. “My 18-year-old son Abdollah was taking a stroll in the bazaar with his friends when Balal shoved him,” said the victim’s father, Abdolghani Hosseinzadeh, according to Isna. “Abdollah was offended

and kicked him but at this time the murderer took an ordinary kitchen knife out of his socks.” Hosseinzadeh Sr has come to the conclusion that Balal did not kill his son deliberately. “Balal was inexperienced and didn’t know how to handle a knife. He was naive.” According to the father, Balal escaped the scene of the stabbing but was later arrested by the police. It took six years for a court to hand down a death sentence, and the victim’s family deferred the execution a number of times. A date for execution was set just before the Persian new year, Nowruz, but the victim’s family did not approve of the timing. Hosseinzadeh said a dream prompted the change of heart. “Three days ago my wife saw my elder son in a dream telling her that they are in a good place, and for her not to retaliate . . . This calmed my wife and we de-

cided to think more until the day of the execution.” Many Iranian public figures, including the popular TV sport presenter Adel Ferdosipour, had called on the couple, who have a daughter, to forgive the killer. Although they did so, Balal will not necessarily be freed. Under Iranian law the victim’s family have a say only in the act of execution, not any jail sentence. In recent years Iran has faced criticism from human rights activists for its high rate of executions. The UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, accused Iranian President Hassan Rouhani of doing too little to improve the country’s human rights, especially reining in its staggering use of capital punishment. As of last week, 199 executions are believed to have been carried out in Iran this year, according to Amnesty, a rate of almost two a day. Last year Iran and Iraq were responsible

for two-thirds of the world’s executions, excluding China. At least 369 executions were officially acknowledged by the Iranian authorities in 2013, but Amnesty said hundreds more people were put to death in secret, taking the actual number close to 700. Iran is particularly criticised for its public executions, which have attracted children among the crowds in the past. Iranian photographers are often allowed to document them. Bahareh Davis, of Amnesty International, welcomed the news that Balal had been spared death. “It is of course welcome news that the family of the victim have spared this young man’s life,” she said. “However, qisas regulations in Iran mean people who are sentenced to death under this system of punishment are effectively prevented from seeking a pardon or commutation of their sentences from the

authorities – contrary to Iran’s international obligations.” She added: “It’s deeply disturbing that the death penalty continues to be seen as a solution to crime in Iran. Not only is the death penalty the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment with no special deterrent impact, but public displays of killing also perpetuate a culture of acceptance of violence. “Public executions are degrading and incompatible with human dignity of those executed. “In addition, all those who watch public executions – which regrettably often includes children – are brutalised by the experience.” In October last year an Iranian prisoner who survived an attempted execution and was revived in the morgue was spared another attempt, though his family said he had lost mental stability and remained in jail. THE GUARDIAN

N Korean officials give London barber a bad hair day
BRItIsH police said on Tuesday that they had intervened after North Korean Embassy officials reportedly told a London hairdresser to take down a discount haircuts advert featuring leader Kim Jong-un. Mo Nabbach said two officials identifying themselves as being from the Stalinist state’s mission took pictures of his M&M Hair Academy in Ealing, west London. They then demanded to know his name and ordered him to remove the “disrespectful” poster from the salon window, he told the London Evening Standard newspaper. The poster featured a large picture of Kim’s distinctive short back and sides hairdo with the slogan: “Bad hair day? 15 per cent off all gent cuts through the month of April.” “I told them this is England and not North Korea and told them to get their lawyers,” Nabbach said. “The two guys were wearing suits and they were very serious. It was very threatening.” Nabbach, who is also a fashion photographer, said he had since removed the offending picture. His son Karim said they had put up the poster in response to a recent unconfirmed story that North Korean men are now only allowed to wear the same haircut as their young leader, who took power after the death of his father Kim Jong-il in December 2011. “We didn’t realise but the North Korean Embassy is a 10-minute walk from the salon. The next day we had North Korean officials pop into the salon asking to speak to the manager,” he said. “[Mo Nabbach] went to Ealing police station afterwards to file a report just in case anything happened to the salon overnight. Apparently [the apparent North Korean officials] went to the police as well. “We haven’t had any trouble since then, if anything the poster has become a tourist attraction. It was just something that had been in the news, and the North Korean officials didn’t even have the haircut. “We always put up little offers in the window, it’s harmless. We were just making light of a bad situation in North Korea.” Police confirmed that they had stepped in to resolve the issue. “Officers spoke to both parties involved and no offence was disclosed,” a Metropolitan Police spokesman said. There was no immediate response from the North Korean Embassy, located in a suburban London house less than three kilometres away from the salon. The Kim family has ruled the country for more than six decades with an iron fist and a pervasive personality cult. Kim Jong-un’s haircut is strikingly similar to that of his grandfather Kim Il-sung, reinforcing efforts by the young leader to project himself more in the image of the state’s founder leader than of his father. AFP

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

Opinion
www.phnompenhpost.com
EDITORIAL PERSONNEL Publisher Chris Dawe Editor-in-Chief Chad Williams Editor-in-Chief Weekend Post Alan Parkhouse Editor-in-Chief Post Khmer Kay Kimsong Managing Editor Post Khmer Sam Rith Chief of Staff Cheang Sokha Deputy Chief of Staff Chhay Channyda National News Editor Shane Worrell National Assignment Editor Joe Freeman Digital Media Director David Boyle Deputy News Editor Vong Sokheng Business Editor Post Khmer May Kunmakara Property Editor Pisei Hin Foreign News Editor Joe Curtin Sports Editor Dan Riley Picture Editor Scott Howes Lifestyle and 7Days Editor Poppy McPherson Deputy Head of Lifestyle Desk Pan Simala Chief Sub-editor Michael Philips Sub-editors Laignee Barron, Daniel de Carteret, Alice Cutty, Will Jackson, Eddie Morton, Bennett Murray, Kevin Ponniah, Daniel Pye, Shane Rothery, Sean Teehan, Sam Wheeler, Stuart White, Emily Wight, Amelia Woodside Reporters Khouth Sophak Chakrya, Sen David, Hor Kimsay, Buth Reaksmey Kongkea, Mom Kunthear, Khoun Leakhana, Lieng Sarith, Kim Sarom, Phak Seangly, Meas Sokchea, Chhim Sreyneang, May Titthara Photographers Heng Chivoan, Pha Lina, Hong Menea, Sreng Meng Srun, Vireak Mai Web Editor Leang Phannara Webmasters Uong Ratana, Horng Pengly SIEM REAP BUREAU

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Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen (right) speaks to Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop (left) during a meeting at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh on February 22.

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N A recent visit to Southeast Asia, I was reminded of the strength of Australia’s partnership with the countries of ASEAN – the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. In Malaysia, I met some of the 300,000 alumni of Australian universities, many now serving in key government and business positions. In the Philippines I saw first-hand our joint relief effort in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan and was joined by hundreds of schoolchildren to celebrate Australia’s new $150 million initiative for basic education needs. In Vietnam, I was reminded further of our cooperation with projects such as the Australian-Asian Development Bank co-funded by Cao Lanh Bridge that will connect communities in an economy of nearly 90 million people. The 10 nations of ASEAN have the potential for strong economic growth that will dramatically lift living standards across Southeast Asia, according to a recent report by the World Bank. For example, the report highlighted studies showing that ASEAN could boost the welfare of its members by 5.3 per cent or $69 billion

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and economic growth by up to one per centage point through deeper economic integration. Australia is willing and able to be a partner in the economic agenda for this region and to increase our existing deep economic engagement, that has already seen two-way trade increase from 45 billion Australian dollars to A$92 billion (US$42 billion to US$86 billion) between Australia

of lasting peace, security and stability, sustained economic growth, shared prosperity and social progress”. ASEAN countries have made great progress towards this goal, and together are working toward the realisation of an historic, and welcome, ASEAN Community by the end of 2015. The nations of ASEAN have in recent years grown at twice the rate of

Just as traditional diplomacy aims for peace, economic diplomacy aims for prosperity
and ASEAN over the past decade. The new Australian government has adopted a policy of “economic diplomacy” as a key platform of our foreign policy to ensure we unlock the productivity enhancing benefits of closer trade and investment ties in our region. Just as traditional diplomacy aims for peace, economic diplomacy aims for prosperity. It is timely that we reflect on Australia’s partnership with ASEAN, as we reach the milestone this month of 40 years of bilateral relations. We have worked with all ASEAN members to realise our countries’ shared aspirations “to live in a region world economic growth, doubling their share of global GDP and reducing poverty significantly, by up to half in some cases. They have led the way in developing regional security architecture that is fostering a cooperative region in which states act consistently within international law, enjoy freedoms of navigation and overflight and are free from coercion and intimidation. And they are strengthening their capacity to respond to natural disasters, through better coordination of their relief efforts and those of partners like Australia. I am determined to increase our

engagement in our neighbourhood. The Australian government has launched the New Colombo Plan to support young Australians to study and undertake internships in the region. I will be inviting all ASEAN countries to build on this year’s two pilot locations of Singapore and Indonesia, from 2015, complementing Australia’s extensive education programs with the region. I also want to work with ASEAN to strengthen regional cooperation, in particular through the East Asia Summit. It has the right mandate and membership for enabling the region to deal with strategic issues – be they security, trade or financial. And as a partner to ASEAN’s Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance, Australia will continue to work with ASEAN to ensure timely and effective responses to disasters. I am personally committed to Australia’s relationship with ASEAN and its member states. So much so that I will be visiting all 10 ASEAN countries before our leaders meet at a Commemorative 40th anniversary Summit in Naypyidaw later this year. Australia’s future lies in our region – our geography is our destiny.
The Honourable Julie Bishop is the foreign minister of Australia.

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THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18 , 2014

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THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18 , 2014

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1ST FLOOR WOODEN HOUSE For Rent North of Russian Market area, 02 bedrooms, very big balcony, basic furnisher, very nice and clean kitchen, very safety and quite, many trees around, very good condition for living. Price: US$600/month. Tel: 092 23 26 23/ 081 23 00 00

bIG SwIMMING POOL Apartment for rent located near Royal Palace, 1-2-3BR:$1200$1700- $2000/m,big Living room,European Kitchen Tel:089 36 32 06, Email:yim.chyvorn@yahoo.com

MODERN DESIGN APaRTMENT for Rent Located in Rose Condo, 12th floor, 03 bed, open & large living room, fully and modern furnished, modern kitchen, lots of light, nice balcony, nice pool & gym, very good condition for living. $1,800 /m Tel: 092 23 26 23/081 23 00 00 www.towncityrealestate.com

MODERN APaRTMENT FOR Rent Located near independent monument, 02 bedrooms, open living room and kitchen, fully and modern furnished, very safety area, very quiet, very good condition for living. Price: USD770/month Tel: 092 23 26 23/081 23 00 00 www.towncityrealestate.com

MODERN LINk HOUSE FOR Rent In Bassak Garden City, 03 bedrooms, large living room, very nice design, fully and modern furnished, nice kitchen, quiet & safe. the best location for residence. Price: US$1,600/month Tel: 092 23 26 23/ 081 23 00 00 www.towncityrealestate.com

RIvERSIDE APaRTMENT FOR Rent $650/M: Riverside & Palace 1Living room, 1Bedrooms, 1Bath Western Style, Motor Parking Fully Furnished and Big Balcony Tel: 077 777 697 or 012 939 958
777 697

VTRUST APaRTMENT Building 1 For RENT at monthly price $275-$700, fully furnished, 24-hour receptionists, security guards, backup power, elevator, safe environment and security camera Location: #37, ST. 111, Boeung Brolit. 012 569 832 |012 944 191 | 012 912 651

VTRUST APaRTMENT Building 3 For RENT, a fully furnished 1 bedroom, nice river view from your balcony, monthly price $500 with free cleaning, internet, water, cable TV, maintenance Location: #112, St. Tonle Sap (peninsular) 012 569 832 | 012 944 191 | 012 912 651

SUNNY APPT FOR RENT , located in BKK3 1-2BR:$400$600/m nice Living room, big Kitchen, Tel: 089 36 32 06 Email:yim.chyvorn@yahoo.com, www.dragonrealtykh.com

BRaND NEw MODERN Apartment for Rent Tonle Basac 01-02 beds &Penthouse, real modern interior designed, large living room, very light, fully & modern furniture, modern Kitchen, roof top pool & gym, Price: $1,200 – 2,000 and 3,500/m Tel: 092 23 26 23/ 081 23 00 00 www.towncityrealestate.com

WESTERN STYLE VILLa FOR Rent In Beoung Keng Kang I (BKKI), 04 bedrooms, large living room, fully furnished, western kitchen, garden and trees, big parking and playground, very safe, the best location for residence. Price: US$4,500/month Tel: 092 23 26 23/ 081 23 00 00

TRaDITIONaL WOODEN HOUSE For Rent At Chhroy Changeva area, river view, ground floor, 03beds, fully furnished, very lights, western kitchen, very safety and quite, very nice garden, very good condition for living. Price: US$1,700/month Tel: 092 23 26 23/ 081 23 00 00 www.towncityrealestate.com

2BEDROOM APaRTMENT FOR Rent $450/M Good location BKK3 1Living room, 2Bedrooms, 2Bath Big Window, Sunlight, Motor Park Fully Furnished and Big Balcony Tel: 077 777 697 or 012 939 958 1BEDROOM APaRTMENT FOR Rent Loc: near Independent Monument $500/M with Full Furniture Tel: 077 777 697 or 012 939 958

VTRUST APaRTMENT Building 2 For RENT at monthly price $620-$900, Fully furnished 1&2 bedrooms, living room,kitchen, dining room, elevator, balcony & free entrance to Sokhah Fitness Club. Location: #31, ST. 113, Boeung Brolit. 012 569 832 | 012 944 191 | 012 912 651

VTRUST APaRTMENT Building 4 For RENT, a luxurious 2bedrooms, living room, kitchen, dining room, monthly price 1,040$, free for internet, cleaning, water & Entrance to Sokhah Fitness Club. Location: #247, ST.51 St. 360, BKK1 012 569 832| 012 944 191 | 012 912 651

BRaND NEw ROOF TOP Swimming Pool Apartment For rent,Located near Russian market ,1-2BR:$650-$850-$1200/month Nice living room, European kitchen Tel:089 36 32 06, Email:yim.chyvorn@yahoo.com

MODERN APaRTMENT FOR Rent Located in south of Russian Market, 01-02 bedrooms, large living room, fully and modern furnished, modern kitchen, lots of light, nice balcony, very good condition for living, big parking. Price: US$600-US$850/month Tel: 092 23 26 23/081 23 00 00 www.towncityrealestate.com

TRaDITIONaL VILLa FOR RENT In Beoung Keng Kang I (BKKI), 04 bedrooms, large and open living room, basic furniture, western kitchen, garden and trees, big parking and playground, quiet & safety. the best location for residence and office. US$4,000/m Tel: 092 23 26 23/ 081 23 00 00 www.towncityrealestate.com

TRaDITIONaL WOODEN HOUSE for Rent In Tonle Bassak area, 2 bed , real wooden design, very big and open living room, western kitchen, very nice garden, big parking and play ground, very good for residence and office, very quiet and safety area. Price: US$2,200/m Tel: 092 23 26 23/081 23 00 00 www.towncityrealestate.com

20

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

Travel
INTERNATIONAL FLIGHT SCHEDULE
SIEM REAP - MANILA 5J 258
Arrival 03:30 09:05 09:05 14:40 16:20 18:40 19:40 21:50 20:50 14:30 20:50 13:45 20:50 13:00 14:30 20:50 16:30 18:45 10:25 16:05 17:00 17:25 22:20 22:50 16:00 10:20 4:10 06:05 22:40 08:40 11:25 14:40 17:15 15:50 08:10 14:00 12:30 11:35 13:00 13:15 10:45
Qatar Airways No. 296 Blvd. Mao Tse Toung (St. 245), Ground floor, Intercontinental Hotel PP Tel: +23 42 40 12/13/14 www.qatarairways.com Cambodia Angkor Air (K6) PP Office, #90+92+94Eo, St.217, Sk.Orussey4, Kh. 7Makara, 023 881 178 /77718-333. Fax:+855 23-886-677 www.cambodiaangkorair.com E: mai@royalaviationexpert.com Koreanair (KE) Room.F3-R03, Intelligent Office Myanmar Airways International Center, Monivong Blvd,PP Tel: (855) 23 224 047-9 #90+92+94Eo, St. 217, www.koreanair.com Sk. Orussey4, Kh. 7 Makara, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. T:023 881 178 | F:023 886 677 www.maiair.com Cebu Pacific (5J) Phnom Penh: No. 333B Monivong Blvd. Tel: 023 219161 Siem Reap: No. 50,Sivatha Blvd. Tel: 063 965487 E-mail: cebuair@ptm-travel.com www.cebupacificair.com

MANILA - SIEM REAP 22:30 16:35 10:40 12:25 12:45 18:30 18:35
15:35 15:35

FROM PHNOM PENH
Flighs K6 720 PG 938 PG 932 TG 581 PG 934 FD 3617 PG 936 TG 585 CZ 324 QR 965 QR 967 CZ 324 CZ 6060 VN 840 QR 965 QR 967 VN 841 VN 3856 KA 207 KA 207 KA 209 KA 209 KA 205 KE 690 OZ 740 AK 1473 MH 755 MH 763 AF 273 FM 833 MI 601 MI 622 3K 594 3K 594 MI 607 2817 2817 2817 2817 BR 266 VN 840 QV 920
8M 402 8M 401

TO PHNOM PENH
Arrival 01:10 08:15 11:10 11:10 16:40 18:15 20:40 21:45 16:05 22:45
05:20+1

2.4.7 1, 6, 7 2.4 5 7 3, 2 5
.2....7 ...4...

02:11 22:15 15:20 15:40 16:05 21:35 21:55
18:40 18:30

5J 257 MI 633 MI 622 MI 616 MI 636 MI 630 MI 618
3K 597 3K 597

2.4.7 1, 6, 7 2.4 7 3, 2 5 5
.2....7 ...4...

19:45 14:35 08:40 10:40 13:55 07:55 16:35
13:45 13:45

21:30 15:45 09:50 11:50 17:40 11:35 17:45
14:50 14:50

SIEM REAP - SINGAPORE MI 633 MI 622 MI 630 MI 615 MI 636 MI 617
3K 598 3K 598

SINGAPORE - SIEM REAP

Days Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily ..34..7 12...6. Daily 2.4.7 Daily ..34..7 12...6. Daily Daily 1.2.4.7 6 1 3.5.7 2 Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily 2 2.3.4.5.7 1.3.5.6.7 2.4 1234..7 ....56. Daily 1.3 2.4.5 6 7 Daily Daily Daily 1.3.6 1.3.6

Dep 12:05 06:40 09:55 10:05 15:30 17:05 19:30 20:40 08:00 16:10 22:40 08:00 14:45 17:30 16:10 22:40 14:00 19:20 11:25 11:45 18:30 17:25 19:00 23:40 23:50 08:35 11:10 17:10 20:05 19:50

Flighs K6 721 PG 931 TG 580 PG 933 FD 3616 PG 935 TG 584 PG 937 CZ 323 QR 964 QR 966 CZ 6059 CZ 323 VN 841 QR 604 QR 966 VN 920 VN 3857 KA 208 KA 206 KA 206 KA 206 KE 689 OZ 739 AK 1474 MH 754 MH 762 AF 273 FM 833 MI 602 MI 622 3K 593 MI 608 2816 2816 2816 2816 BR 265 VN 841 QV 921 8M 401

Days Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily ..34..7 12...6. 2.4.7 Daily Daily ..34..7 12...6. Daily Daily

Dep 02:25 07:55 07:55 13:30 15:15 17:30 18:25 20:15 14:30 01:05 07:25 12:00 19:05 09:40 13:30 19:50 15:50 18:00

PHNOM PENH - BANGKOK

BANGKOK - PHNOM PENH

SIEM REAP - VIENTIANE QV 522
8M 402

VIENTIANE - SIEM REAP 10:05
20:15
Dep 12:55

PHNOM PENH - BEIJING PHNOM PENH - DOHA ( Via HCMC)

BEIJING - PHNOM PENH DOHA - PHNOM PENH ( Via HCMC)

2.4.5.7
1. 5
Days 1-3-5

13:00
21:25
Arrival 13:55

QV 512
8M 401
Flighs K6 131

2.4.5.7
1. 5
Days 1-3-5

06:30
17:05
Dep 11:20

09:25
19:15
Arrival 12:20

SIEM REAP - YANGON
PREAH SIHANOUK - SIEM REAP Flighs K6 130

YANGON - SIEM REAP
SIEM REAP - PREAH SIHANOUK

PHNOM PENH - GUANGZHOU 11:40 18:10 20:35 17:10 23:40 14:45 20:05 15:05 22:25 22:05 21:00 22:35 06:40 06:50 11:20 14:00 20:00 06:05 23:05

GUANGZHOU - PHNOM PENH

PHNOM PENH - HANOI PHNOM PENH - HO CHI MINH CITY

HANOI - PHNOM PENH HO CHI MINH CITY - PHNOM PENH

Joe Yonan travelled from London, to Paris and finally to Bracelona all in one day, sampling the food in every city. BLOOMBERG

PHNOM PENH - HONG KONG

HONG KONG - PHNOM PENH 1.2.4.6.7 08:50 3.5.7 1 2 Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily 2 14:30 15:25 15:50 18:30 19:10 15:15 09:30 3:20 20:05

AIRLINES CODE
2817 - 16 Tigerairways 5J - CEBU Airways. AK - Air Asia BR - EVA Airways CI - China Airlines CZ - China Southern FD - Thai Air Asia FM - Shanghai Air K6- Cambodia Angkor Air KA - Dragon Air MH - Malaysia Airlines MI - SilkAir OZ - Asiana Airlines PG - Bangkok Airways QR - Qatar Airways QV - Lao Airlines SQ - Singapore Airlines

COLOUR CODE
1 Monday 2 Tuesday 3 Wednesday 4 Thursday 5 Friday 6 Saturday 7 Sunday

PHNOM PENH - INCHEON

INCHEON - PHNOM PENH

PHNOM PENH - KUALA LUMPUR

KUALA LUMPUR - PHNOM PENH

TG - Thai Airways | VN - Vietnam Airlines

Three meals, three nations, only 24 hours
Joe Yonan

PHNOM PENH- PARIS PHNOM PENH - SHANGHAI PHNOM PENH - SINGAPORE 09:30 12:30 12:20 15:25 15:25 18:10 16:40 09:10 14:50 13:20 12:45 17:30 17:50 13:30 11:45 15:20 18:20 18:10 21:10 19:40 12:00 17:50 16:10 17:05 18:50 19:10 14:55 12:30

PHNOM PENH - PARIS SHANGHAI - PHNOM PENH 2.3.4.5.7 19:30 1.3.5.6.7 07:40 2.4 Daily Daily 1.3 2.4.5 6 7 Daily Daily Daily 1.3.6 08:40 13:30 16:20 15:00 07:20 13:00 11:30 09:10 11:30 11:45 08:20 SINGAPORE - PHNOM PENH

This flight schedule information is updated about once a month. Further information, please contact direct to airline or a travel agent for flight schedule information.

AIRLINES

I

Air Asia (AK) Room T6, PP International Airport. Tel: 023 6666 555 Fax: 023 890 071 www.airasia.com

PHNOM PENH -TAIPEI PHNOM PENH - VIENTIANE

TAIPEI - PHNOM PENH VIENTIANE - PHNOM PENH

Dragon Air (KA) #168, Monireth, PP Tel: 023 424 300 Fax: 023 424 304 www.dragonair.com/kh

PHNOM PENH - YANGON SIEM REAP - PHNOM PENH

YANGON - SIEM REAP

Tiger airways G. floor, Regency square, Suare, Suite #68/79, St.205, Sk Chamkarmorn, PP Tel: (855) 95 969 888 (855) 23 5515 888/5525888 E: info@cambodiaairlines.net

SilkAir (MI) Regency C,Unit 2-4,Tumnorb Teuk, Chamkarmorn Phnom Penh Tel:023 988 629 www.silkair.com

SIEM REAP - BANGKOK Flighs
K6 700

BANGKOK - SIEM REAP Dep
12:50

REGULAR SHIPPING LINES SCHEDULES CALLING PORT ROTATION
Arrival
04:05
LINE RCL (12calls/moth) CALLING SCHEDULES 1 Wed, 08:00 - Thu 16:00 2 Thu, 14:00 - Fri 22:00 3 Fri, 20:00 - Sat 23:59 MEARSK (MCC) (4 calls/moth) SITC (BEN LINE (4 calls/onth) ITL (ACL) (4 calls/month) APL (4 calls/month) COTS (2 calls/month) 1 Th, 08:00 - 20:00 2 Fri, 22:00- Sun 00:01 Sun 09:00-23:00 Sat 06:00 - Sun 08:00 Fri, 08:00 - Sun, 06:00 Irregula FREEQUENCY ROTATION PORTS 1 Call/week 1 Call/week 1 Call/week 1 Call/week 1 Call/week 1 Call/week 1 Call/week 1 call/week SIN-SHV-SGZ-SIN HKG-SHV-SGZ-HKG (HPH-TXGKEL) SIN-SHV-SGZ-SIN SGN-SHV-LZP-SGN - HKG-OSA-TYO-KOB - BUS-SGH-YAT-SGN - SIN-SHV-TPP-SIN HCM-SHV-LZP-HCMNBO-SGH-OSA-KOBBUS-SGH-HGK-CHM SGZ-SHV-SIN-SGZ SIN-SHV-SIN

Days
Daily

Arrival
2:00

Flighs
K6 701

Days
Daily

Dep
02:55

PG 924 PG 906 PG 914 PG 908 PG 910 CZ 3054 CZ 3054
K6 850

Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily 2.4.6 1.3.5.7
Daily

09:45 13:15 15:20 18:50 20:30 11:25 19:25
06:50

11:10 14:40 16:45 20:15 21:55 15:35 23:20
08:30

PG 903 PG 905 PG 913 PG 907 PG 909 CZ 3053 CZ 3053
K6 851

Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily 2.4.6 1.3.5.7
Daily

08:00 11:35 13:35 17:00 18:45 08:45 16:35
19:30

09:00 12:45 14:35 18:10 19:55 10:30 18:30
21:15

SIEM REAP - GUANGZHOU

GUANGZHOU - SIEM REAP

SIEM REAP -HANOI VN 868 VN 842 VN 844 VN 800 VN 3818 VN 826 VN 3820 VN 828 VN 3822 KE 688 OZ 738 AK 281 MH 765 1.2.3.5.6 Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily 3.5.7 12:40 18:05 19:45 21:00 11:10 13:30 17:45 18:20 21:35 23:15 23:40 08:35 14:15 15:35 19:45 21:25 22:40 12:30 14:40 18:45 19:20 22:35 06:10 07:10 11:35 17:25

HANOI - SIEM REAP VN 843 VN 845 VN 845 VN 801 VN 3809 VN 827 VN 3821 VN 829 VN 3823 KE 687 OZ 737 AK 280 MH 764 Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily Daily 3.5.7 15:25 17:05 17:45 18:20 09:15 11:35 15:55 16:20 19:45 18:30 19:20 06:50 12:10 17:10 18:50 19:30 20:00 10:35 12:35 16:55 17:40 20:45 22:15 22:40 07:50 13:15

2 calls/month BBK-SHV-BKK-(LZP)

34 call/month
SGZ= Songkhla, Thailand SHV= Sihanoukville Port Cambodia SIN= Singapore TPP= TanjungPelapas, Malaysia TYO= Tokyo, Japan TXG= Taichung, Taiwan YAT= Yantian, China YOK= Yokohama, Japan

SIEM REAP - HO CHI MINH CITY

HO CHI MINH CITY - SIEM REAP

BUS= Busan, Korea HKG= HongKong kao=Kaoshiung, Taiwan ROC Kob= Kebe, Japan KUN= Kuantan, Malaysia LZP= Leam Chabang, Thailand NBO= Ningbo, China OSA= Osaka, Japan SGN= Saigon, Vietnam

SIEM REAP - INCHEON

INCHEON - SIEM REAP

FLY DIRECT TO MYANMAR MONDAY, WEDNESDAY & SATURDAY YANGON - PHNOM PENH SIEM REAP - YANGON

PHNOM PENH - YANGON YANGON - SIEM REAP

SIEM REAP - KUALA LUMPUR

KUALA LUMPUR - SIEM REAP

FLY DIRECT TO SIEM REAP MONDAY, WEDNESDAY & SATURDAY #90+92+94Eo, St. 217, Sk. Orussey4, Kh. 7 Makara, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Tel 023 881 178 | Fax 023 886 677 | www.maiair.com

LIKE to spend my vacations going to one place and staying put, diving in, digging deep. A week in Paris. Two weeks in Tokyo. A week in Mexico City. If there’s a side trip, I keep it brief. But my February jaunt in Europe was different. I changed gears and decided to hit three cities – in three countries – all in one day. A morning Eurostar from London would get into Paris in time for a long lunch before an afternoon TGV that would arrive in Barcelona in time for a late-night dinner. The alarm goes off at 6:15am Rachel, my friend and frequent travelling companion, and I are staying in London for just a night at a true icon of train travel: the Great Northern Hotel and it is just across the street from the Eurostar terminus in the St Pancras station. It’s 7am, We grab breakfast at the takeout window simply dubbed Kiosk, an operation of the hotel’s Plum + Spilt Milk restaurant. Sandwiches stuffed with sausages (and some, thankfully for me, with vegetables), croissants and other pastries, granola and fruit and coffee await. It’s now about 7:30am, so we have time to sit in the station and tuck into our breakfast before our train starts moving at 7:55. The sandwich has soft bread, gooey melted cheese, thin slices of marinated portobello mushroom, roasted tomato – and a tang of that brown sauce. We arrive at Gare du Nord right on schedule. Culture shock sets in. Were we really in London just this morning? At Gare de Lyon, Didier, our waiter in mod glasses, takes our order – we start with Kir cocktails and a little amuse-bouche of artichokes and prawns en croute.

Another waiter brings over Rachel’s appetiser – a cris py pig-and-escargot terrine, along with the cheese cart, which I’m choosing from for my first course, breaking every rule of French dining. One taste of the Camembert’s tang and slight funkiness, and memories of Paris meals past come flooding back. I get a bowlful of vegetables, each one separately stewed and perfectly tender, sitting over creamy potato puree spiked with saffron, onto which I drizzle some Italian olive oil. Rachel gets a baked scorpion fish over those same potatoes, and we toast with glasses of Pouilly-Fuisse. Now we’re in Paris. But not for long. We look up, still finishing our espresso and financiers, and it’s 1:25 and – “L’addition, s’il vous plait!” It’s now 1:55 and our train leaves at 2:07. Phew. By 7pm, through one last tunnel – When the conductor announces “Barcelona Sants,” cheers and applause break out. Unbelievably, we feel pangs of hunger as we taxi to meet the owner of our Airbnb apartment on a bustling little street in the Raval neighbourhood. We stroll about 15 minutes to Sesamo, a vegetarian place with excellent reviews of. The praise is undeserved, at least on the night we visit. By the time we make it a few courses into our seven-course dinner, to a plate of simply boiled potatoes that we’re supposed to swipe through flavourless purees of eggplant and spinach, the disappointment is crushing. In just a few days we’re headed back to the City of Light – for a jampacked weekend. It’s not the same as staying there, or anywhere, for a week or two. But it’ll certainly do. THE WASHINGTON POST

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

Sport

21

Frenchman masters the Mekong
H S Manjunath

RENCH solo adventurer Remi Camus, who set out in October last year on an incredible 4,400-kilometre riverboarding expedition down the Mekong River from its origin in Tibet, successfully completed his mission on Tuesday in Vietnam, where this amazing river flowing through six countries joins the South China Sea. The 28-year-old began his final 300-kilometre push from Phnom Penh on March 28 after spending a few days receiving medical attention for painful rashes on his legs caused by polluted water. By the time he sighted the passport and visa checkpoint in Vietnam after covering nearly 100 kilometre, his legs buckled up again with some flesh from his right foot missing as he put it in an email to the Post on April 1. He had to stop for a while, but his determination got the better of the intense pain, despite having to swim against slow water and then the sea tides. “It all ended well for me. I am sitting facing the South China Sea and my mission is over. I thank everyone who supported me,” Camus told the Post hours after getting out of the salty water on April 15. “I wish to thank all the media outlets in France, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam for covering this adventure, which I undertook to highlight the geographical significance of the Mekong River, which touches the lives of 70 million people. “A special thanks to people like Josh Galt, Albin Roux and Hoan Kieu Roux for their help and sup-

F

French adventurer Remi Camus triumphantly holds up his riverboard on Tuesday in Vietnam at the end of his 4,400km journey down the Mekong River.

PHOTO SUPPLIED

port until the very end,” added Camus. Galt, who has been in Phnom Penh since December last, is one of the world’s most experienced riverboarders. The two met had met last May at the French Slalom Championship for Hydrospeed, as riverboarding is called in France. They were also together while swimming the rapids in Si Phan Don (Four Thousand Islands) in Laos. Galt kept Camus company all

along the route from Phnom Penh to the finish in Vietnam. Camus had first caught the attention of the world when he ran solo across the Australian continent in support of his charity organisation Expedition Terre Inconnue, whose motto is to bring clean and safe water to every person on Earth. The Frenchman’s only faithful companion on the lonely stretches of water in Asia was a specially-built

riverboard, which also held in its small pockets his daily needs. His first shocker during this long and arduous journey was the huge rapids in deep inaccessible gorges in China. But more devastating than the challenges nature threw at him, was the bizarre situation he had to contend with in Laos when authorities detained him for over a month, accusing him of being a spy who had entered the country illegally.

Camus has a clear vision of what he has to do as a follow-up now that he has accomplished this rare feat. “I have to meet the people who have supported me through all this. With the first-hand knowledge I have, we need to make people and governments aware of the need to clean up the Mekong and make lives better for people who are depending on this great source of life,” he said.

Top trio ease into third round Prosecution pillories
GRANd Slam winning trio Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Stanislas Wawrinka all looked in sublime form as they progressed to the third round of the Monte Carlo Masters with straight set victories on Wednesday. Top seed Nadal, champion at eight of the last nine editions, spent 72 minutes in beating Russian qualifier Teimuraz Gabashvili, who held a shock 3-1 lead early on, 6-4, 6-1. Federer, seeded fourth at a Masters event that he has never won, looked in top shape as he romped to a 6-1, 6-2 thrashing of talented Czech veteran Radek Stepanek in 52 minutes. But Wawrinka, the thirdseeded Australian Open winner, spent even less time on court, with his 45-minute match tying that of holder Novak Djokovic’s opening win the day before as the Swiss hammered Marin Cilic 6-0, 6-2. Wawrinka won the first set in just 18 minutes, then “slowed” the pace. Nadal rallied after trailing early on against Gabashvili, and never looked like suffering what would have been only his third-ever defeat at the event. The top seed – who moved to wthin one win of bringing up a half century of victories – won six games in a row on his way to claiming the opening set and reaching 4-0 in the second. A break by his opponent for 4-1 only delayed the inevitable, with Nadal getting the break straight back for 5-1 before taking the match on his first match point a game later. Nadal plays Italian Andreas Seppi in the third round after he defeated Pablo Andujar 7-6 (7/5), 5-7, 6-4. “I started slowly, but he was playing aggressively and hitting strong,” said Nadal. “In the first match you want to find rhythm and play some long points. I felt comfortable in the second set, I think I was playing better.” Federer was pleased with his level of play against his 35-yearold opponent, who has posed problems for several of the top 10 players this season. “I was able to get a lot of returns back into play,” said the 17-time Grand Slam winner. “On clay, when you have the upper hand from the baseline, it’s kind of hard to get out of it. “I think that’s how it was for Radek today. I had a good start to both sets, then I was solid on my own service games. “The next thing you know, you’re in the lead and you can hit freely. It was clearly a good match to start my clay-court campaign.” The Swiss said that if his wife were to give birth to their third child close to the French Open, which gets under way in five weeks, he would give the Grand Slam event a miss. Canadian eighth seed Milos Raonic could prove to be a dark horse as he equalled his best showing in the tournament with a 6-7 (4/7), 6-2, 6-1 defeat of Taiwan’s Yen LuHsun. AFP THE prosecution on Wednesday derided a forensic expert hired by Oscar Pistorius, accusing him of being unqualified to testify and rubbishing his account of the circumstances of Reeva Steenkamp’s death. State prosecutor Gerrie Nel sought to prove that forensic geologist Roger Dixon was out of his depth when he was testifying about bruises on Steenkamp’s body and other key elements of the crime scene. Dixon, a university professor, told the court about the sound made by Pistorius’s cricket bat hitting his bathroom door, visibility in the star sprinter’s bedroom and blood splatter. Under intense pressure from Nel, Dixon described himself as a “layman”, a phrase the prosecutor seized on. “You see Mr Dixon how irresponsible it is to try and be an expert on an area that you’re not,” said Nel. Pistorius’s defence team has tried to prove that neighbours who testified to hearing “blood-curdling screams” followed by gunshots were mistaken. If proved correct, the neighbours’ account could punch a hole in Pistorius’s claim he did not know Steenkamp was in the toilet. The defence team – with the help of Dixon – has tried to

Pistorius’s key expert
show that the noises were in fact Pistorius bashing a cricket bat against his toilet door after realising he mistakenly killed the model. “Are you a sound expert, sir?” asked Nel. “Have you received training in decibels and sound?” Not specifically, said Dixon. He also testified that Pistorius’s bedroom was so dark the athlete could not have seen whether Steenkamp was in bed. When Nel asked the geologist about how he analysed the visibility in Pistorius’s bedroom room at night, Dixon said: “My lady, the instruments I used there were my eyes.” “Are you a blood splatter expert?” said Nel. “I have received no training in blood splatter analysis,” said Dixon, a former employee of the South African Police Service. Pistorius’s lawyer Barry Roux is expected to call up to 17 witnesses to bolster the athlete’s story that he shot his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp by mistake, believing she was an intruder breaking into his upmarket home in a gated Pretoria community. The Paralympic gold medallist has pleaded not guilty to intentionally killing the 29-year-old model and law graduate. AFP

Spain’s Rafael Nadal hits a return to Russia’s Teymuraz Gabashvli during their Monte Carlo Masters tennis match on Wednesday in Monaco. AFP

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THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

Sport

Young master storms final of chess champs

TOURNAMENt favourite Krouch Chantarith was stunned 2-0 by his youthful rival Cheav Boravy in Wednesday’s final of the 2014 National Traditional Chess Championship, played in front of a huge crowd just outside of the Angkor Wat temple complex in Siem Reap. Twenty-five-year-old Boravy relished in the new speedier format of the tournament that forced moves to be made every 20 seconds, while his opponent, who is twice his age, bemoaned the restrictions. “I’ve not shown my full ability because I usually take lots of time during matches, but for this tournament I was under too much pressure from the time limitation,” Chantarith said. The coolly confident Boravy, who wrapped up the title decider in just over 14 minutes, said: “I believed I could control the situation and I predicted I would claim victory since the very start.” A cash prize fund contributed by Prime Minister Hun Sen, with additions from main sponsors Angkor Beer, Tourism Minister Thong Khon and Siem Reap Governor Khim Bun Song, saw the champion collect $4,800, while the runnerup went home with $3,300. Su Sophy received $1,800 after snatching third place from Keo Vanank, who banked $1,400. Apart from the chess competition, New Year sporting festivities at Angkor Wat included a tug-of-war, Bokator and traditional Cambodian wrestling co-organised by the National Olympic Committee of Cambodia and the Union of Youth Federations of Cambodia. Around 1,000 members of the public participated in a successful effort to break the national record for tug-of-war, while about 100 athletes competed and performed in the traditional Cambodian martial art of Bokator and wrestling.
YEUN PONLOK, TRANSLATED BY CHENG SERYRITH

HE Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO) has admitted to procedural breaches during its collecting of a sample from two-time 200-metres Olympic champion Veronica Campbell-Brown in 2013. The 31-year-old Jamaican athletics great’s sample taken at last May’s Jamaica Invitational Meet in Kingston, tested positive for a diuretic HCT and resulted in her being handed a twoyear ban by the IAAF, which was overturned in February by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). CAS were scathing in their written report, released on Tuesday, outlining the reasons for finding in CampbellBrown’s favour. They described the case as “deplorable” and said it “gives rise to the most serious concerns about the overall integrity of the Jamaican Athletics Administrative Association’s (JAAA) antidoping processes, as exemplified in this case by the flaws in JADCO’s (Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission) sample collection and its documentation”. The body issued a statement on Wednesday admitting the error, saying “JADCO acknowledges that some procedures carried out in the sample collection process on May 4, 2013, at the Jamaica Invitational Meet at the National Stadium, in Kingston, Jamaica, were inconsistent with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA)

JADCO admits rules breached in doping case T
International Standards. Specifically, no partial sample kits were used in the collection process.” It came out during the hearing that Campbell-Brown – only the second woman athlete after East German Barbel Wockel (1976/80) to win successive 200m Olympic titles when she won in 2004 and 2008 – failed to pass the required amount of urine on her first attempt. She was allowed to keep the container to pass the additional amount, which is against international standards. Doping control officer Dr Paul Wright testified at the Campbell-Brown hearing that WADA told them that if the required amount of urine was not passed on the first attempt, it could be kept for the additional amount. However, JADCO said: “We therefore, take this opportunity to state that there is no documentation in existence at JADCO, indicating that WADA gave the Commission permission to deviate from the standard, which is applicable to all signatories of the WADA Code.” JADCO added: “Currently, the restructured JADCO, working in concert with its recently appointed Chairman and Board of Commissioners, continues to refine and upgrade its operational procedures to remove any weaknesses in the system. “As a result, we are continuing to recruit qualified employees to fill the necessary staff vacancies and assist in

Veronica Campbell-Brown’s appeal against her two-year ban for doping was upheld by the court of arbitration for sport. AFP

improving JADCO’s testing capabilities and public education programme.” Campbell-Brown – two-time world outdoor individual gold medalist in the 100m in 2007 and then the 200m in 2011 – was one of several high-profile Jamaican athletes to fail drugs tests last year.

Former men’s 100m world record holder Asafa Powell and hsi training partner 2008 Olympic women’s 100 metres silver medallist Sherone Simpson received 18-month bans from a JADCO tribunal last week qfter testing positive for a banned stimulant, oxilofrine. AFP

Thunder clinch West’s second play-off seed
KEvIn Durant’s dunk with 16.5 seconds to play lifted Oklahoma City to a 112-111 victory over Detroit on Wednesday on the final night of the NBA regular season. With the victory, the Thunder secured the second seed in the Western Conference playoffs. Durant drove past Kyle Singler on the left side for the twohanded slam – giving the Thunder their first lead since early in the third quarter. Detroit’s Brandon Jennings couldn’t get an off-balance three-point attempt to fall in at the buzzer. Durant scored 29 of his 42 points in the second half, including 21 in the fourth quarter, and sealed his fourth NBA scoring title in the last five years. “A lot of good things took place, a lot of improvement and growth,” Thunder coach Scott Brooks said of Oklahoma City’s season. “I thought our guys really competed all year. “With that said,” he added, “I’m not overly thrilled with how we played tonight.” The Thunder will open the playoffs tomorrow against the Memphis Grizzlies, who defeated the Dallas Mavericks 106-105 in overtime in a battle for the seventh seed in the West. Oklahoma City’s victory meant the Los Angeles Clippers were sure to be the West’s third seed, even before they finished the season with a 110-104 loss at the Portland Trail Blazers. The Clippers will face sixthseeded Golden State in the first round, while fourth-seeded Houston will face the number five Blazers. The eighth-seeded Mavericks will face the top-seeded San Antonio Spurs. San Antonio, who had already clinched the best record in the league and the top seed in the West, was among the teams who rested key players in their regular season finales. Tim Duncan sat out the entire game and All-Star point guard Tony Parker skipped the second half as the disappointing Los Angeles Lakers downed the Spurs 113-100. The Toronto Raptors wrapped up the third seed in the Eastern Conference, despite falling to the New York Knicks. JR Smith scored 30 points to lead the Knicks – already eliminated from post-season contention – in a 95-92 triumph at Madison Square Garden. New York erased a 21-point first-half deficit against a Raptors team that rested most of their starters for the second half after learning they had secured the third seed after Chicago’s 91-86 overtime loss to Charlotte. The Raptors will take on the Brooklyn Nets in the first round of the playoffs. All 16 play-off teams, eight in the East and eight in the West, had been decided before Wednesday’s final regularseason games, but some of the seedings to decide the firstround match-ups were still at stake. The Washington Wizards rolled to a 118-102 victory over the Boston Celtics to secure the number five seed in the East. The Wizards won their last four games of the regular season for their best record in nine years (44-38) and will face the fourth-seeded Bulls in Chicago on Sunday in their first play-off game in six years. Eastern top seeds Indiana closed out the season with a 101-86 victory over Orlando and will face the Atlanta Hawks in the first round in a rematch of last year’s firstround series won in six games by the Pacers. Two-time defending champions Miami, already assured of the Southeast Division title and second seed in the East, rested regular starters LeBron James, Chris Bosh, and Mario Chalmers in a 100-87 loss to Philadelphia. “There’s a storm coming, and it’s time for us to really start preparing for that storm and getting ready for an incredible journey that’s going to test all of us,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said, looking forward to the post-season. Dwyane Wade started and had 16 points for the Heat, who will take on Charlotte in the first round of the playoffs. AFP

Japan’s Tanaka fans 10 as Yankees defeat Cubs

JApANEsE pitching ace Masahiro Tanaka delivered a dazzling 10 strikeouts and allowed just two bunt singles on Wednesday in the New York Yankees’ 3-0 win over the Chicago Cubs. Tanaka, unfazed by unseasonably chilly weather at Yankee Stadium – where snow fell overnight – walked just one for the second time in three starts this season. AFP

Khan signs deal with Mayweather’s promoter

AMiR Khan has signed with Al Haymon, which should propel him to the front of the queue for a shot at Floyd Mayweather next year. Haymon and Mayweather – who defends his world welterweight title against Marcos Maidana in Las Vegas on May 3 – have made several significant signings lately, notably the Canadian knockout artist Adonis Stevenson. They also look after Adrien Broner and Danny Garcia, potential Mayweather opponents. Haymon, a former music industry mogul who rarely gives interviews but has the ear of Mayweather and Showtime boxing execs, is fast establishing himself as the most powerful figures in boxing. THE GUARDIAN

Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thunder dunks against the Detroit Pistons at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City on Wednesday. AFP

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

Football

23

Bayern set up final clash
OLDERS Bayern Munich will face Borussia Dortmund in next month’s German Cup final after cruising to a 5-1 win over second-division Kaiserslautern in Wednesday’s semi-final. Bayern reached their third consecutive domestic cup final by bouncing back from successive Bundesliga defeats to see off Kaiserslautern, who had previously knocked out top-tier sides Bayer Leverkusen and Hertha Berlin en route to the semis. Goals by Bastian Schweinsteiger, Toni Kroos, Thomas Mueller, Mario Mandzukic and Mario Goetze saw Bayern go through to the May 17 final at Berlin’s Olympic Stadium. Bayern, who wrapped up this season’s Bundesliga title with a record seven games to spare, will face Dortmund, who shocked Bayern 3-0 in Munich in the league last Saturday, in a repeat of last season’s Champions League final. Pep Guardiola’s Bayern had few problems against the ‘Red Devils’ of Kaiserslautern, but director of sport Matthias Sammer was unimpressed with the performance ahead of next Wednesday’s Champions League semi-final at Real Madrid. “I have the feeling that we’re not really burning hot at the moment,” complained Sammer with Bayern making no secret of their desire to win the German Cup and Champions League to repeat last year’s feat of winning a treble of titles. “For the matches we have coming up, that’s not enough. “We have to ask ourselves whether we really want these two titles.” Bayern needed just 24 minutes to take the lead when Germany midfielder Schweinsteiger headed home an Arjen Robben corner having earlier hit the crossbar. Kroos doubled the hosts’ lead at the Allianz Arena on 32 minutes to make it 2-0 at the break.

Pohang steal into the Champs League last 16

H

POHANG Steelers became the first East Asian team to reach the AFC Champions League last 16 on Wednesday as an upset and a late own goal elsewhere set up a tense final round of group games. The 2009 winners from South Korea beat Cerezo Osaka 2-0 away to qualify for the knockout stages, leaving their Group E rivals all locked on five points each. Defending champions Guangzhou Evergrande missed their chance to reach the knockout round on Tuesday, meaning it will be all to play for in the East Asian zone as the group stage wraps up next week. AFP

MLS to spread wings in Atlanta with new team

Kaiserslautern goalkeeper Tobias Sippel punches the ball ahead of team-mates and Bayern Munich players during their German Cup semi-final match at the Allianz Arena in Munich on Wednesday. AFP

Robben won a penalty five minutes into the second half when he was fouled by Kaiserslautern defender Chris Loewe and Mueller fired home the spot-kick. Kaiserslautern striker Simon Zoller headed a consolation goal on the hour mark, with his side surviving on less than 30 per cent possession, before Mandzukic netted the hosts’ fourth to end any hopes of a fight-back. The Croatia international, who scored a hat-trick in the 5-0 quarterfinal drubbing of Hamburg, converted a Goetze cross on 78 minutes. Goetze then tapped home Bayern’s

fifth just before the final whistle as the attacking midfielder beat Kaiserslautern’s off-side trap. On Tuesday, Poland striker Robert Lewandowski hit his 100th goal for Dortmund as they beat VfL Wolfsburg 2-0 in the other semi-final. The 25-year-old has vowed to leave the club having delivered silverware this season and faces his future employers Bayern in the Berlin final. Lewandowski, who will join the Bavarian giants at the end of the season, scored a hat-trick in the 2012 Cup final when Dortmund routed Bayern 5-2.

Dortmund took an early lead against the Wolves when midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan cut in from the right and unleashed a superb shot just inside the near post on 12 minutes. With half-time approaching, Belgium Under-21 international Junior Malanda hit the post for Wolfsburg and compatriot Kevin de Bruyne fired the rebound wide for the visitors. It was a costly miss as Dortmund went 2-0 up 72 seconds later when Germany star Marco Reus found Lewandowski unmarked and he slammed his shot into the top left-hand corner to reach his milestone. AFP

MAJOR League Soccer is set to take flight in Atlanta, the city the NFL’s Falcons and NBA’s Hawks already call home. In fact, the expansion club awarded to Atlanta on Wednesday – which will be the 22nd MLS franchise – will be owned by Falcons owner Arthur Blank and will play in a state-of-the-art retractable roof stadium that will be shared with the NFL team. “We are thrilled to welcome Atlanta to Major League Soccer as our 22nd team,” MLS Commissioner Don Garber said in a statement announcing the awarding of the Atlanta franchise. The club is expected to debut in 2017. AFP

Guingamp stun Monaco in French Cup semi-final
LiGUe 1 strugglers Guingamp beat much-fancied Monaco 3-1 after extra time in the semi-finals of the French Cup on Wednesday to set up a final date with Brittany rivals Rennes. Mustapha Yatabare’s opener was cancelled out by Dimitar Berbatov as the match at a packed Stade du Roudourou finished 1-1 after 90 minutes, but goals by Fatih Atik and Yatabare again in the second period of extra time clinched a famous win for the home side. Guingamp will now meet Rennes at the Stade de France on May 3 in a rerun of the 2009 final, which a Guingamp side then in the second tier won 2-1. AFP

Jan is the man in GW34
Dan Riley

WeeKeNd fiXTUres
Saturday April 19 Tottenham v Fulham 6:45pm Aston Villa v Southampton 9pm Cardiff v Stoke – 9pm Newcastle v Swansea – 9pm West Ham v Crystal Palace 9pm Chelsea v Sunderland 11:30pm Sunday April 20 Norwich v Liverpool – 6pm Hull v Arsenal – 8:05pm Everton v Man United 10:10pm Saturday April 19 Atletico Madrid v Elche 1:30am Osasuna v Valencia – 9pm Levante v Getafe – 11pm Sunday April 20 Real Sociedad v Espanyol 1am Almeria v Celta de Vigo 5pm Rayo Vallecano v Real Betis 10pm Monday April 21 Sevilla v Granada – 12am Barcelona v Athletic Bilbao 2am

English Premier League

EvEN though more than half of the 11 fixtures in gameweek 34 of the Cellcard Fantasy League failed to muster more than a single goal each, there was still much to be admired about the Easter break battles. The most valuable performer by a substantial margin was Crystal Palace’s Jason Puncheon, whose crucial goals in both of their games over the round helped the Eagles reach that 40-point mark usually synonymous with survival. Two goals, two sets of top bonuses and a clean sheet helped the English winger rack up 23 fantasy points, all for the price of just £5.2 million. Meanwhile, Sunderland striker Connor Wickham, whose double helped snatch a draw at Man City on Wednesday, totalled up 15 points, as did Cardiff defender Juan Torres Ruiz via his match winner at Southampton. Over in the weekly competition, certain clued-up individuals did well to field players featuring twice in the gamew-

Augsburg v Hertha Berlin 8:30pm Freiburg v Borussia Mönchengladbach – 8:30pm Werder Bremen v Hoffenheim – 8:30pm Hamburg v Wolfsburg 11:30pm Sunday April 20 Nurnberg v Bayer Leverkusen – 8:30pm Stuttgart v Schalke – 10:30pm Saturday April 19 Atalanta v Verona – 8pm Catania v Sampdoria – 8pm Chievo v Sassuolo – 8pm Genoa v Cagliari – 8pm Lazio v Torino – 8pm AC Milan v Livorno – 8pm Parma v Inter Milan – 8pm Udinese v Napoli – 8pm Juventus v Bologna 11:30pm Sunday April 20 Fiorentina v Roma – 2am Saturday April 19 St Etienne v Rennes 1:30am Sunday April 20 Monaco v Nice – 7pm Bastia v Ajaccio – 10pm Bordeaux v Guingamp 10pm Lorient v Montpellier 10pm Reims v Sochaux – 10pm Valenciennes v Nantes 10pm Monday April 21 Marseille v Lille – 2am

Italian Serie A

Olympiakos furious after incidents mar Cup tie
THe Greek Cup semi-final second leg match between PAOK and Olympiakos was held up for over an hour on Wednesday after PAOK fans set the Greek champions’ bench on fire. It left the Olympiakos vice-president seething with rage – not helped either by the fact that home fans had also placed anchovies, in reference to one of the champions’ nicknames, on the seats in the dugout. “They burned our bench, this is ultimate humiliation, this is terrorism. Shame and disgrace. Football cannot be played this way,” said Olympiakos vice-president Savvas Theodoridis, who witnessed the incidents. AFP

Crystal Palace’s Jason Puncheon (second right) was gameweek 34’s MVP on 23 points thanks to his important pair of goals. AFP

eek, none more so than Jan in’t Veld with his side BTB Resort FC which garnered a magnificent 106 points. Jan’s skipper pick of Man City’s David Silva for 24 points was nicely bolstered by three other Dream team members, namely Puncheon, his Palace team-mate Joel Ward (10 points) and Everton’s Leighton Baines (11). Jan collects the US$20 phone voucher and T-shirt from sponsors Cellcard for his efforts. The overall standings saw Sabina Lawreniuk and her team Why always me? sensationally slingshot Matt Culis’ PPFC into first place after a mighty fine 97 points from the gameweek. Sabina’s side is currently on 2,254 points, 291st in the global

rankings and 20 points clear of PPFC, with Dominic Field’s 2BelgesJusqu’enMai still in third on 2,187. First place at the end of the season will receive a new 3.5G iPad, SIM card and T-shirt from Cellcard. In the concurrently run Facebook competition (Cellcard. Fantasy), a total of eight users correctly guessed the 3-2 outcome of the Liverpool v Man City game, although none were able to identify the top points grabber as David Silva. Following a lucky draw held yesterday, Bonnita You was selected as the winner of the $10 phone card. Gameweek 35 plays out from tomorrow until Monday with all manner of must-win matches.

Spanish La Liga

French Ligue 1

German Bundesliga

Saturday April 19 Borussia Dortmund v Mainz 8:30pm Eintracht Braunschweig v Bayern Munich – 8:30pm

WedNesdaY’s ResUlTs
English Premier League Everton 2 Crystal Palace 3 Man City 2 Sunderland 2

24

THE PHNOM PENH POST APRIL 18, 2014

Sport

Jumping Bale
Real Madrid’s Gareth Bale celebrates after scoring during their Spanish Copa del Rey final against Barcelona at the Mestalla stadium in Valencia on Wednesday. The Welshman’s stunning individual goal five minutes from time helped his club overcome their Clasico rivals 2-1 to lift the trophy. Madrid had gone in front after just 10 minutes as Angel di Maria raced onto Karim Benzema’s through ball and fired low into the corner. Marc Bartra levelled for Barca on 68 minutes when he headed home Xavi’s corner. But Bale’s late winner meant Barca slumped to a third consecutive defeat for the first time in more than 10 years and now look certain to end the season without winning a major trophy. Early yesterday morning, thousands of cheering Real Madrid fans welcomed their team back to the Spanish capital. Many wrapped in the club’s flag, cheered as the squad arrived at Madrid’s central Cibeles Square, the traditional home for raucous Real Madrid victory celebrations, in a white open-topped bus with the word “champions” written in black letters on its sides. AFP

Full steam ahead for Mercedes
Daniel Hicks

OmINANT Mercedes will look to capitalise on fresh woes at Red Bull and Ferrari and hammer home their championship advantage with a fourth straight win at Sunday’s Chinese Grand Prix. Three victories out of three, including one-two finishes in Malaysia and Bahrain, tell the story but the Silver Arrows also received boosts this week from two of their main rivals. Ferrari were left reeling after team principal Stefano Domenicali quit following a torrid start to the season, including a poor showing 10 days ago in Bahrain. And Red Bull were handed a setback when they lost their appeal against the stripping of 18 points from Daniel Ricciardo for a fuel-flow violation in Melbourne. Both incidents will have only heightened the mood at Mercedes, who are top of the constructors’ standings and have Nico Rosberg leading the drivers’ table ahead of Lewis Hamilton. And with Hamilton a three-time winner at the Shanghai International Circuit, they will be confident of another big points haul this weekend.

D

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton (right) celebrates on the podium with team-mate Nico Rosberg after winning the Formula One Bahrain Grand Prix on April 6. AFP

“I’m in a really good place at the moment and walking around the garage too, you can see the positive energy within the team right now,” Hamilton said. “Everyone is focused on getting the maximum from these early races and continuing to build beyond the strong start we’ve made to the season.” Hamilton’s wheel-to-wheel duel with Rosberg in Bahrain provided this year’s best action and a welcome break from discussion of F1’s

technical changes and quiet new hybrid engines. But much of the focus will again be off the track as Ferrari’s untried new team principal Marco Mattiacci, who moves over from the Italian company’s road car business, makes his F1 debut. His first task will be to establish the Prancing Horse as the “best of the rest”, according to engineering director Pat Fry. They are currently fifth in the constructors’ standings.

“Currently, our first priority is to establish ourselves as the second best team,” Fry told the team website. “We are looking at all areas of the car – power unit, aero, suspension. We are trying to make as big a step as we can for each and every race.” Fry expects a better showing around the 56 laps of the 5.451-kilometre Shanghai circuit after suffering poor traction and a consequent loss of straight-line speed in Bahrain. But the Englishman would not be drawn on where he expected Ferrari to finish on Sunday. Former world champions Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen were ninth and tenth in Bahrain. “It’s proving hard to make predictions this year – at least when it comes to who can challenge the current leaders,” Fry said. Red Bull have promised a move on from their disappointment over the Ricciardo appeal, which was quashed at a special hearing in Paris. “I’m stronger for it & hungrier than ever. Not that I need any more motivation, I’m pumped!” tweeted the Australian, who was disqualified from second at his home grand prix for a fuel infringement. Red Bull are a lowly fourth in the constructors’ championship,

a massive 76 points behind Mercedes who have streaked away by claiming 111 points out of a maximum possible 129. Four-time defending world champion Sebastian Vettel is in an unaccustomed sixth place in the title race, but will hope to start clawing his way into contention in Shanghai. “The grand prix in China is still something special for me, because I won my first race there with Red Bull Racing in 2009,” Vettel said. Force India have been the surprise package of the season, second in the constructors’ standings and taking only their second ever podium finish when Sergio Perez came third in Bahrain. Team-mate Nico Hulkenberg was fifth. “Forty-four points out of three races, it’s the dream start we were hoping for,” team principal Vijay Mallya. “Bahrain was not just a oneoff and we’ve been improving with each race,” he added. Germany’s Rosberg, who won the season-opener in Australia before yielding to Hamilton in Malaysia and Bahrain, leads the drivers’ standings on 61 points, 11 ahead of his British team-mate. Sunday’s race gets underway at 2pm Cambodian time. AFP