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09PHNOMPENH114 19 February 2009 Solo uso oficial Embassy Phnom Penh

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O 190606Z FEB 09





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08 STATE 132759


1. (U) The following is Embassy Phnom Penh’s contribution toward
the preparation of the 2009 Trafficking in Persons Report for
Cambodia, covering the period April 2008 - March 2009. Responses
follow the questions outlined in Ref B. The entire report is
classified Sensitive But Unclassified (SBU).


1A. (SBU) What is (are) the source(s) of available information on
trafficking in persons? What plans are in place (if any) to
undertake further documentation of human trafficking? How reliable
are these sources?

There are no firm estimates or reliable numbers available as to the
extent or magnitude of the overall trafficking problem. Two surveys
have attempted to measure the commercial sex industry in the
country: a 1997 report by the Commission on Human Rights and a 2003
study by a former Fulbright researcher, Thomas Steinfatt. The 1997
Commission on Human Rights for the National Assembly report included
a country-wide survey of brothels, and estimated that there were
14,725 brothel workers in Cambodia (ignoring other venues) and that
81 percent of workers were Cambodian and 18 percent Vietnamese. The
study did not attempt to differentiate between voluntary sex workers
and trafficking victims.

Steinfatt’s 2003 statistical study on the number of prostitutes and
sex trafficking victims in Cambodia estimated 18,256 sex workers
(all venues) in Cambodia, of which 65.6 percent were Cambodian and
32.8 percent Vietnamese. The Steinfatt study estimated that there
were 2,000 sex trafficking victims in Cambodia, with 80.4 percent of
the sex trafficking victims being ethnic Vietnamese. Steinfatt’s
trafficking estimates have been disputed by some who believe the
actual victim numbers to be higher, although no separate data exist
that accurately quantify sex trafficking victims.

Limited trafficking statistics are available from RGC border
authorities involved in the repatriation of Cambodians from
neighboring countries. Cambodian authorities, in cooperation with
international organizations such as UNICEF and IOM, try to
distinguish between illegal migrants and trafficking victims,
particularly children, and have some statistical information.
Within Cambodia, NGOs that provide services to victims referred by
police, judicial, and social service officials often are another
source of limited statistical information based on their respective
There are many organizations, international agencies, and government
institutions and ministries working on human trafficking issues.
They have been useful contacts in providing statistics, information
and updates on human trafficking. A Cambodian government anti-human
trafficking National Task Force (NTF); the NTF’s oversight
mechanism, the High Level Working Group (HLWG), chaired by DPM Sar
Kheng; Ministry of Interior’s Department of Anti-Human Trafficking
and Juvenile Protection, Ministry of Justice (MOJ); Ministry of
Social Affairs, Veterans and Youth Rehabilitation (MOSAVY); Ministry
of Women’s Affairs (MOWA); other relevant ministries and
governmental agencies; and, local and international NGOs are good
sources of information of human trafficking and sexual

1B. (SBU) Is the country a country of origin, transit, and/or
destination for internationally trafficked men, women, or children?
Does trafficking occur within the country’s borders? If so, does
internal trafficking occur in territory outside of the government’s
control (e.g., in a civil war situation)? To where are people
trafficked? For what purposes are they trafficked? Provide, where
possible, numbers or estimates for each group of trafficking
victims. Have there been any changes in the TIP situation since the
last TIP Report (e.g., changes in destinations)?

Cambodia is a source, destination, and transit country for
trafficking in persons, including men, women and children. Some
observers reported that a majority of Cambodian trafficking victims
are trafficked for labor purposes, due to Cambodia’s relative

PHNOM PENH 00000114 002 OF 026

poverty and poor economic conditions compared with its immediate
neighbors; Cambodian women and girls are also trafficked for sexual
exploitation. Cambodians are trafficked primarily within the
region, particularly to Thailand and Malaysia. Trafficking also
occurs within Cambodia’s borders, from rural areas to Phnom Penh and
other secondary cities within the country, and from Vietnam to Phnom
Penh and other cities as well.

In Cambodia, commercial sex work goes on in guesthouses, karaoke
clubs, massage shops, beer gardens, restaurants and nightclubs that
provide direct and indirect sex workers. Barbershops, noodle shops,
and other commercial establishments may also function as venues for
commercial sex operations either on the premises or "on delivery"
for clients. Both TIP victims and voluntary sex workers are
intermingled at such venues. Many ethnic Vietnamese sex workers in
voluntary sex work were originally trafficked to Cambodia through
debt bondage; some sex workers are still in debt bondage. Debt
bondage is also a factor in the recruitment of Cambodian trafficking
victims, who are initially convinced that they are accepting
legitimate restaurant, factory, or other work opportunities in Phnom
Penh or other cities and then forced into sex work.

Thailand is the major destination country for trafficked Cambodians,
but there are no reliable numbers on how many persons are trafficked
to Thailand each year. According to a 2008 UN Inter-Agency Project
against Human Trafficking (UNIAP) report, approximately 130,000
individuals are deported back to Cambodia from Thailand each year.
However, UNIAP reported that the number of deportees who are victims
of trafficking is unknown because it is believed that Thai or
Cambodian authorities do not or cannot identify those deportees who
are TIP victims. Cambodian men are trafficked to work in the Thai
fish, construction and agricultural industries; women and young
girls are trafficked for factory and domestic work, and are also
subject to sexual exploitation in the Thai commercial sex industry.

The 2008 UNIAP report detailed a July-August 2008 study of Cambodian
deportees from Thailand at the Poipet immigration police checkpoint
on the Cambodia-Thai border. Of 50 deportees interviewed, a total
of 56 instances of labor migration were recorded (some of the
deportees migrated more than once; 32 instances male, 24 instances
female), with 13 of those instances indicating strong evidence of
human trafficking (11 men and two women), and 16 additional
instances of some evidence of exploitation (nine men and seven

There continued to be incidents of Cambodian men and women
trafficked to Malaysia via Thailand for commercial sexual
exploitation, agricultural labor, and domestic work. The Kamrieng
border crossing point in Battambang (connecting to Trat in Thailand)
was one trafficking/smuggling route. In previous years, there were
scattered reports of individuals trafficked to farther destinations
such as India and off the coast of Somalia. There was also a report
confirmed by an official of the Embassy of the Philippines in Phnom
Penh of a Filipino woman trafficked to Sihanoukville for the sex
trade in 2007. The Philippine Embassy reportedly assisted the
victim to return to her home country.

In 2004, UNICEF indicated the beginnings of a change in TIP
patterns, with evidence suggesting a rising number (if not yet
significant compared to the main routes) of trafficking cases to
Hong Kong and Taiwan. In 2007, there were reports of Cambodian
women who went to Taiwan through marriage but are now left in legal
limbo for political and diplomatic reasons. It is reported that
there are about 5,000 Cambodians in Taiwan, some of whom were
trafficked for sexual exploitation. During the reporting period,
there were no new reported cases of women trafficked to Hong Kong
and Taiwan.

In 2008, the NGO Cambodian Women’s Crisis Center (CWCC) assisted 204
victims of trafficking, 13 of whom were victims of cross border
trafficking. The NGO AFESIP assisted 149 victims of trafficking
among the 302 residents admitted to its shelters during the year.
According to statistics from the High Level Working Group of the
National Task Force, between April and December 2008, the Ministry
of Interior (MOI) made arrests in 21 human trafficking cases
involving 82 victims, of which nine were cases of sex trafficking
and 12 of labor trafficking. The Ministry of Social Affairs,
Veterans and Youth Rehabilitation (MOSAVY) reported that from April
to December 2008, police referred to MOSAVY 407 victims of sex
trafficking. In addition, MOSAVY received nine victims of sex
trafficking and 71 victims of labor trafficking returned from
Thailand. An additional 486 victims of labor trafficking were
referred to MOSAVY after being returned from Vietnam. During 2008,

PHNOM PENH 00000114 003 OF 026

IOM identified 160 victims of trafficking, out of 683 Cambodian
returnees from Vietnam, and 112 victims of trafficking, mostly
children, out of 132,795 Cambodian returnees from Thailand.

The NGO International Justice Mission (IJM) observed that the sale
of underage girls in brothels, bars, and restaurants in 2008
remained at a level similar to 2007. The NGO reported that their
investigations indicated the majority of activity was in brothels,
disco clubs, and karaoke establishments. IJM believed there was an
increase in the number of large entertainment establishments in
Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, with reports of some establishments having
as many as 100 or more adult and underage females, and where rooms
are typically made available for sex. IJM reported that its
investigations indicate that a high percentage of the minors in
these establishments were Vietnamese who came to Phnom Penh and Siem
Reap from the Cambodian provinces or from Vietnam.

IJM reported its observation that the virginity trade continues to
be problematic in Siem Reap, and that foreign (mostly Asian) and
Cambodian men paid USD 800 to 4,000 to have sex with virgins. This
is a change from 2007 when one NGO reported that Asian men paid USD
1,000 or less for three days with a virgin.

The victim services NGO Cambodian Women’s Crisis Center (CWCC)
reported intake of more TIP cases in 2008 compared to 2007 but added
that it does not view the increase in numbers as a reflection of a
growing trafficking problem, but rather of intensified law
enforcement efforts. Victim services NGO Agir Pour Les Femmes en
Situation Precaire (AFESIP) reported that it provided services to
149 trafficking victims, and that MOSAVY referred other victims to
the NGO during the course of the year who chose not to stay with
AFESIP for services. Those referrals are not reflected in AFESIP’s
statistics, and AFESIP was unable to report whether they have
noticed a trend in the number of TIP victims from 2007 to 2008.

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported a
decrease in trafficking victims returned to Cambodia from Vietnam —
160 returnees in 2008 compared to 224 in 2007. IOM could not confirm
the reasons for the decrease, but stated that some possibilities
were: more effective interventions with persons vulnerable to TIP,
better cooperation between Cambodian and Vietnamese officials to
prevent trafficking from occurring, and economic development in
border provinces. IOM stated their belief that the statistics do
not accurately portray the size of the TIP problem. IOM stated that
programs such as information campaigns, vocational skills trainings,
and micro credit schemes in border town areas have provided
effective alternatives to labor migration and have helped to educate
those who migrate legally about trafficking schemes.

World Hope International reported more referrals by law enforcement
to its assessment center during the year. In 2008, the center
received 84 victims of trafficking, compared to 59 in 2007, and
believed the increase was a result of Cambodia’s new Law on
Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation being
enforced by police as a tool to combat human trafficking.

1C. (SBU) What kind of conditions are the victims trafficked into?

The lack of statistical data impedes attempts to characterize
changes in the trafficking climate from one year to the next. As
long as the economies of Cambodia’s neighbors continue to expand,
Cambodian labor remains cheap and jobs inside the country are
scarce, Cambodians will continue to migrate out for labor purposes.
As in previous years, CWCC stated that an increasing number of
victims repatriated from Malaysia who seek support from CWCC report
that they ended up in exploitative labor conditions after migrating
to Malaysia as domestic workers with the assistance of legal labor
migration companies. The Cambodian government has licensed 17 such
labor export companies; however, there is inadequate monitoring of
migration and work conditions, and a lack of protection for domestic
workers in Malaysia. The Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MOWA)
continues to have serious concerns about the protection of Cambodian
women working in domestic positions in Malaysia and the potential
for abuse or coercion and trafficking into the sex industry. The
MOWA has advocated the establishment of a follow-up mechanism to
ensure the well-being of domestic workers after arrival in Malaysia.

In previous years, IOM stated that Cambodian laborers returning from
various locations such as India, Malaysia, and off the coast of
Somalia have reported that they were trafficked for labor. In 2008,
IOM helped facilitate the return of 17 Cambodian men who had been

PHNOM PENH 00000114 004 OF 026

trafficked from Cambodia onto fishing boats in Thailand, sailed to
Malaysia, and then escaped into Malaysia. However, IOM stated there
were no confirmed cases of trafficking to India or off the coast of
Somalia in 2008.

1D. (SBU) Vulnerability to TIP: Are certain groups of persons more
at risk of being trafficked (e.g., women and children, boys versus
girls, certain ethnic groups, refugees, IDPs, etc.)?

There are no studies that suggest minority groups are more
susceptible to trafficking. Some provinces, by virtue of their
proximity to neighboring Thailand or Vietnam, are source areas for
trafficking victims. In a 2004 survey, PACT-Cambodia found a
correlation between residential origins of trafficking victims and
communities along major highways.

PRM funded an IOM study released in August 2007 on patterns of
trafficking among commercially sexually exploited women and girls in
Siem Reap, Koh Kong and Sihanoukville provinces — provinces
identified as having a high prevalence of trafficking. The research
showed that groups that appear to be persistently vulnerable to
trafficking include: women and girls who have severed relations with
their family households, often due to physical and sexual abuse;
women and girls who previously worked as child domestic workers; and
ethnic Vietnamese women and girls who became domestic trafficking
victims through recruitment or coercion into the virginity trade.

Children are not prevented from crossing the Thai border with
strangers or alone, and Cambodians can buy a border pass to cross
the border without needing to show any identification.
Poipet/Aranyaprathet is the primary Cambodia-Thai border post for
transit. Children mainly from Banteay Meanchey and Battambang
provinces in Cambodia’s northwestern region continue to be
trafficked to Thailand to beg, sell candy or flowers, and shine
shoes. IOM and UNICEF have contact with nearly all children
repatriated from Thailand at the Poipet border crossing, and select
out the trafficking victims for special care through IOM’s Poipet
Transit Center, which is staffed jointly by IOM and MOSAVY staff.
According to UNICEF, in 2008 there were 7,193 children deported from
Thailand to Cambodia and among them, there were 53 unaccompanied
children. According to IOM, Thai authorities repatriated 58 women
and children who were identified as TIP victims and deported another
54 alleged TIP victims, out of 132,795 returnees in 2008.

Social Services of Cambodia and HAGAR released findings of an
exploratory study funded by World Vision Cambodia in January 2008
about the sexual abuse and exploitation of males in Cambodia.
Researchers met with 40 adult and underage males who were known to
be victims of abuse. Key findings from the exploratory study
included: Cambodian male victims were sexually abused by Cambodian
and foreign adults in a variety of settings; male victims were also
abused by other children, adolescents and in some cases women; and,
abuse risk factors included exposure to poverty, separation and/or
divorce or death of a parent and/or siblings, domestic violence, and
drug and alcohol abuse in the home.

According to IOM’s 2008 statistics, children in two districts of
Svay Rieng Province continue to be trafficked to Ho Chi Minh City in
Vietnam for begging. Cambodian traffickers contract with the
children’s parents, with monthly payments ranging from 100,000 riel
(USD 25) to 150,000 riel (USD 37) per child. IOM explained that
Cambodian facilitators take three to four children at a time across
the porous border to Vietnam. A single trafficker may coordinate
several facilitators. Border controls are minimal and the children
cross to Vietnam freely, according to IOM. Cambodian traffickers
personally supervise the children in Vietnam, and reportedly have
few problems with police raids. In a 2007 report, IOM stated that
in some cases Cambodian children migrate together with parents or
relatives who are seasonally migrating as whole families, or one or
two children with parents, to beg in Vietnam.

In 2009, to address concerns surrounding trafficking of infants for
foreign adoption and to bring Cambodia into compliance with the
Hague Convention on Inter-Country Adoption, the RGC continued the
process of drafting new adoption legislation and the new law is
currently with the Council of Ministers for review. A moratorium
since 2002 on international adoption by some western countries,
including the United States, has largely curbed reports of this type
of trafficking, though receiving countries still processing
adoptions in Cambodia continue to report irregularities even with a
very small caseload. The Cambodian government is working with
international organizations and other donors to establish
transparent, ethical adoption processes in the future to diminish

PHNOM PENH 00000114 005 OF 026

the trafficking of infants for profit.

1E. (SBU) Traffickers and Their Methods: Who are the
traffickers/exploiters? Are they independent business people?
Small or family-based crime groups? Large international organized
crime syndicates? What methods are used to approach victims? For
example, are they offered lucrative jobs, sold by their families, or
approached by friends of friends? What methods are used to move the
victims (e.g., are false documents being used?). Are employment,
travel, and tourism agencies or marriage brokers involved with or
fronting for traffickers or crime groups to traffic individuals?

From April 2008 to November 2008, the RGC banned marriages of
foreigners to Cambodians, thereby halting migration to South Korea
through marriage. The marriage suspension was a reaction to a 2007
IOM report of an increase in migration to South Korea through
marriage to South Korean men, and that some Cambodians migrating to
South Korea for marriage were vulnerable to trafficking. IOM noted
that the potential for trafficking there was slim, as the Korean
government strictly enforces the law and protections for women.
According to IOM, in 2004 there were 74 South Korean visas issued to
women who married South Korean men; in 2007, there were more than
1,000. On February 19, 2008, Prime Minister Hun Sen ordered the
Ministry of Commerce to annul business licenses for companies
seeking husbands for Cambodian women, calling the business a form of
human trafficking. In November 2008, the Prime Minister signed a
sub-decree drafted by the MOI and Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA)
containing guidelines for international marriages that should have
lifted the suspension. However, as of February 2009, marriage
applications of Cambodians to foreigners were not being processed by
the RGC. Some observers believed that the measures of the
sub-decree will be hard for Cambodian authorities to verify and
enforce, and would not be effective in preventing TIP through
marriages to persons in other countries. However, the suspension of
marriages to foreigners was widely believed to be a sincere effort
of the RGC to prevent human trafficking to other countries.

Research conducted by Friends International and UNIAP in 2007 on
child begging issues in Thailand found that the majority of
Cambodian child beggars traveled to Bangkok with their mothers or
other family members and that most beggars had a degree of control
over their day-to-day lives. In contrast to previous assumptions,
the research found that the majority of Cambodian child beggars in
Bangkok did not experience abusive practices or trafficking. The
issue is more related to migration of vulnerable migrants rather
than trafficking. However, the research found that almost 20
percent of children questioned came with a facilitator or non-blood
relative. Most of the children who came with their mother said they
were happy with the situation, while half of those who came with a
facilitator said they were unhappy. Due to poverty, lack of jobs,
family problems and unequal access to educational opportunities,
women and children, especially those in rural areas where 80 percent
of the population resides, are the segment of society most
vulnerable to sex trafficking. These victims are particularly
susceptible to the lure of employment, often via the intercession of
relatives, friends, or unknown persons, to pay off personal or
family debts incurred due to factors such as drought or the serious
illness of a family member.

NGOs have identified certain risk factors that increase the
probability of a girl being lured into prostitution: an older
sister, relative, or friend is already involved in the commercial
sex industry; the parents of the girl have divorced or separated;
one or both of the parents are dead and the girl is living with
relatives or friends; one or both parents are drug addicts,
alcoholics, or gamblers; the family is desperately poor; the girl
has little or no education; and the girl is of the appropriate age
for the sex industry. NGOs report that domestic violence and rape
are often precursors to trafficking, as girls who are raped are
culturally stigmatized and left with little hope of having a normal

Traffickers of Cambodian women and children for sex can be
known or distant acquaintances who promise work in Phnom
Penh, or relatives, boyfriends or husbands who take the women or
underage girls and sell them to a brothel. A 2007 IOM study of
trafficking recruitment and facilitating networks found a dynamic
system that is ever-evolving in order to evade counter-trafficking
efforts by the communities, local authorities and NGO partners. TIP
networks are most prevalent in areas which have a high level of
labor migration and high level of impunity for traffickers.
Networks were found to take advantage of family dysfunction,
gender-based norms that support violence against women, and social

PHNOM PENH 00000114 006 OF 026

shame to perpetuate trafficking practices.

The notorious Svay Pak brothel area reportedly continues to be in
operation, despite an extended 2004 crackdown by anti-TIP police and
IJM. Underage girls are available on site in Svay Pak
establishments upon demand, but generally underage girls do not stay
on site in Svay Pak. Current trends show that underage girls from
Svay Pak are delivered to various brothels and establishments during
the evening, or are available on order. IJM reported that attempts
to raid the area in 2007 proved to be difficult, if not impossible,
due to the hidden nature of the crime and the nearly impenetrable
layout of the area which makes it easy for traffickers to escape
quickly. In 2008, IJM reported that police did not follow through
with the NGO’s investigations into and tip-offs on Svay Pak
establishments. A study conducted in 2005 by AIDTouS and the
Coalition to Address Sexual Exploitation of Children in Cambodia
(COSECAM) to re-evaluate the impact on children of closing Svay Pak
found that the closure did not stop the commercial sexual
exploitation of children. The 2005 study found that many of these
children were scattered to other brothels in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap
and Sihanoukville, and may have been living in worse conditions in
underground operations.

A 2007 PRM-funded IOM study reported that traffickers are sometimes
parents who sell their child into debt bondage to serve as domestic
help with other families, or into brothels. The study reports that
there are cases in which family members, friends, or boyfriends
reportedly coerced or forced victims into sex and labor trafficking.
Other observers have reported that individual recruiters coerce
rural and urban victims, claiming to work with labor agencies or
claiming to have connections to good jobs in cities or in other
countries (usually Thailand or Malaysia).

The same 2007 IOM study stated that commercial sale of virginity is
one of the major routes into commercial sexual exploitation with 38
percent of women interviewed having had their virginity sold
(voluntarily or involuntarily). The same study showed that nine
percent of women interviewed reported their virginity trade client
was of Western origin, and the remaining reported having Asian
clients including Cambodian, Japanese, Korean, Taiwanese, Thai,
Filipino, and Chinese persons.

When Cambodians are moved abroad, they often are brought through the
porous borders with Thailand or Vietnam without documentation. Some
women are reportedly trafficked to Thailand for sex by boat from the
Cambodian province of Koh Kong. In cases of human trafficking to
Malaysia, women are reportedly entering the country with valid
Cambodian passports, with allegations of complicity on the part of
Thai and Malay border and immigration officials. Attempts to lobby
Malaysia to grant legal rights to foreign domestic workers have been
unsuccessful, although the Ministry of Women’s Affairs continues
discussions with its counterpart in Malaysia on this issue.

Vietnamese women and children, many in debt bondage, were trafficked
from Kieng Yang, Can Tho, Dong Thap and other provinces in Vietnam
to Cambodia for commercial sex work primarily in Phnom Penh.
Information from AFESIP, CWCC, and UNICEF indicates that Vietnamese
women and girls also are trafficked through Cambodia by organized
Vietnamese criminal gangs to onward destinations in Thailand and

When victims are trafficked out of Cambodia, some NGOs claim that
trafficking networks are involved. Vietnamese, Thai and
Chinese-Malay criminals are alleged to have regional networks that
traffic drugs, guns, women and children to regional markets such as
Thailand and Malaysia. A UNIAP representative reported that
trafficking networks were involved in some cases, but believed that
brokers were responsible for most trafficking cases.



2A. (SBU) Does the government acknowledge that trafficking is a
problem in the country? If not, why not?

The government openly acknowledges that trafficking is a serious
problem in Cambodia. The Prime Minister in March 2006 spoke out
against TIP and called for greater government efforts to combat the
problem. During a June 2008 joint press conference with the Charge
and Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) Sar Kheng, the DPM stated that while
the RGC was pleased with the 2008 tier placement, the RGC believed
there was still much more to be done to eliminate TIP in Cambodia.

PHNOM PENH 00000114 007 OF 026

In April 2007, in an effort to coordinate Cambodia anti-TIP
programs, government entities, and NGOs, the government established
an anti-TIP National Task Force. USAID is providing support to the
NTF through technical assistance. The NTF has an oversight
mechanism known as the "High Level Working Group," sometimes called
the "Leading Task Force." The High Level Working Group (HLWG) is
chaired by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sar Kheng
who has played a leading role in the government’s anti-TIP efforts.
The NTF has a structure of five thematic working groups that focus
on prevention, protection, prosecution, implementation of MOUs and
bilateral agreements, and monitoring activities at the provincial

During the reporting period, the NTF completed its establishment of
all 24 municipal and provincial anti-TIP working groups led by
governors and deputy governors. The working groups were instructed
by the HLWG to create provincial action plans, and were generally
expected to monitor entertainment and other establishments for TIP
cases; inform police of suspected cases; and, regularly report
activity to the High Level Working Group of the National Task Force.
The working groups of Siem Reap and Svay Rieng Provinces have
served as models for other provinces. The Asia Foundation (TAF),
funded by USAID, has worked closely with the model working groups to
develop structured, realistic action plans partly based on input
from the 2008 provincial dialogues and aligned with Cambodia’s draft
National Plan of Action. IOM worked closely with the Koh Kong
Province working group to help develop a Koh Kong action plan.

2B. (SBU) Which government agencies are involved in
anti-trafficking efforts and which agency, if any, has the lead?

The National Task Force (NTF) against Human Trafficking takes the
lead in coordinating anti-trafficking efforts in Cambodia. USAID is
providing support to the NTF through technical assistance. DPM Sar
Kheng chairs the HLWG that serves as an oversight mechanism for the
NTF. Several ministries and agencies in the Cambodian government
have responsibility for combating trafficking in persons, and are
integrated into the NTF structure including: the Ministry of
Interior; Ministry of Women’s Affairs; Ministry of Justice; Ministry
of Social Affairs, Veterans and Youth Rehabilitations; Ministry of
Labor and Vocational Trainings; Ministry of Tourism; Ministry of
Education; Ministry of Information; the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
and International Cooperation; and the inter-ministerial Cambodian
National Council for Children, which has a Sub-Commission on
Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation of Children.

2C. (SBU) What are the limitations on the government’s ability to
address this problem in practice? For example, is funding for
police or other institutions inadequate? Is overall corruption a
problem? Does the government lack the resources to aid victims?

In the past, efforts in Cambodia to end human trafficking have been
impeded by lack of coordination among groups working on the problem.
With the March 2007 launch of the government National Task Force,
the government is making strides to coordinate the efforts of 11
government ministries, three government agencies, and more than 200
international and local NGOs. The NTF structure includes working
groups on prevention, protection, and prosecution, and has recently
established provincial working groups which will report local
anti-TIP efforts to the NTF.

Nonetheless, the Cambodian government is severely limited in its
ability to effectively combat trafficking. In general, Cambodian
government institutions remain very weak as a result of 25 years of
civil war and genocide. The lack of resources is acute; training
and funding for law enforcement and courts are wholly inadequate;
corruption is a major problem; and the overall level of human
resources — trained and competent people — is still greatly
affected by the legacy of decades of civil war. Government
resources for victim assistance must be augmented by assistance from
international organizations and foreign and domestic NGOs. The
government has also been slow in defining custody issues pertaining
to victims and witnesses taken from brothels, as well as the legal
authority of NGOs in the process. In February 2007, the five
responsible government ministries signed an agreement with NGOs
providing victims assistance that established guidelines for
cooperation on these issues. The NTF is also developing a national
minimum standard for victim care to resolve the problem of victim

Lack of coordination and cooperation between police and courts
allowed some traffickers to escape prosecution. While some NGOs
reported cooperative relationships with government authorities on

PHNOM PENH 00000114 008 OF 026

TIP cases in Phnom Penh, there are complaints regarding police
officials at the provincial levels. An NGO director reported that
it is relatively easier to target small traffickers, but large-scale
operations have been difficult to coordinate; the large number of
people involved in the process increased the chances of compromising
the operation.

During the reporting period, the Cambodian government has
encountered new challenges in its fight against TIP. While the
February 2008 passage of Cambodia’s Law on the Suppression of Human
Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation was hailed as a success, the law
created some challenges with police and court officials who received
no training on the law before its passage. During the reorting
period, lower courts and the Appeals Court applied charges and
sentences that appeared inappropriately matched to crimes. One
example from the year was a Phnom Penh Municipal Court decision
charging Thomas Wayne Rapanos with a misdemeanor charge of indecent
acts against a minor despite testimony that money exchanged hands
for sex with 12- and 16-year-old female victims. Rapanos was
sentenced to two years and six months in prison and ordered to pay
USD 1,250 (5,000,000 riels) to the government and USD 750 (3,000,000
riels) compensation to the victim. An Action Pour Les Enfants
(APLE) lawyer for the victims believed there was enough evidence for
the court to have convicted the perpetrator on felony charges of
"Purchase of Child Prostitution," which would have carried a seven-
to 15-year prison sentence due to one of the victims being under age
15. Rapanos reportedly filed an appeal for a lighter sentence.

NTF and Ministry of Justice (MOJ) officials recognized the urgent
need for training of court and other government officials on the new
law. Section 3F below details 2008-2009 RGC training programs.

By April 2008, law enforcement implementation of the Law on the
Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation was in full
effect. Also in April, NGOs implementing USG-funded HIV prevention
programs reported reductions in contacts with brothel-based
prostitutes and increases in the number of street-based prostitutes.
An increase in police crackdowns on brothels — credited by some to
the passage of the new law — were reported to have resulted in many
prostitutes selling sex outside of brothels, on the streets,
increasing their vulnerability to violence and HIV infection as
condom usage is less likely outside of brothels. Additionally,
owners of some establishments such as karaoke bars or beer gardens
were reported to be less collaborative with health workers who
provide HIV prevention information and condoms, apparently seeking
to avoid being seen by police as a place of prostitution.

Also connected to the increased police efforts to crackdown on
brothels were reports that some police officers and guards working
at Ministry of Social Affairs, Veterans and Youth Rehabilitation
(MOSAVY) rehabilitation centers abused prostitutes who were rescued
during raids. In April, a rights group reported that some
prostitutes had been raped, beaten, robbed, extorted, and detained
without due process. The reports spurred much criticism and an
advocacy group protested at the UN in New York. As NGOs and IOs
carried out more in-depth investigations into the allegations of
prostitute abuses that reportedly occurred because of raids to
implement the new law, it became apparent that the majority of the
persons held at MOSAVY detention centers were not prostitutes.
Nonetheless, after the negative reports came to light, MOSAVY
released detainees and indefinitely closed the detention centers
where many of the abuses reportedly occurred. The rescue of adult
prostitutes and arrest of pimps and brothel owners is not anti-human
trafficking work, per se. However, many of the Cambodian
government’s challenges combating TIP during this reporting period
have been attributed to the passage of the new law which combines
TIP crimes and other crimes such as prostitution, pornography, and
child sex abuse. We have included more information on the
challenges related to the passage of the new law in section 3A

NTF officials were receptive to the critical reports regarding
implementation of the new law, and urgently sought solutions. In
October 2008, DPM Sar Kheng signed into effect Guidelines on the
Implementation of the Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and
Sexual Exploitation in an attempt to address concerns about human
rights abuses of prostitutes and other victims rescued during
brothel raids; HIV/AIDS prevention efforts being negatively affected
by enforcement efforts using the new law; and, police arresting
perpetrators on charges that appeared inappropriately matched to the
crime. The guidelines are generally considered to be helpful in
emphasizing that prostitutes should not be treated as criminals.
However, the guidelines did not clarify the difference between

PHNOM PENH 00000114 009 OF 026

trafficking victims and prostitutes, nor provide guidance on
screening of prostitutes or others rescued from brothels for
indications that human trafficking took place. Section 3F below
describes training on the law enforcement implementation guidelines
and victim screening.

Government sources and NGOs reported that police and court officials
investigate TIP cases separately, and the relationship between
police and courts was mainly based on instances when police
requested search and arrest warrants. Prosecutors and judges rarely
called on police responsible for investigating crimes for
clarification, follow up information, or to testify during trials.

There was no prohibition against conducting undercover operations in
commercial sexual exploitation cases; however, IJM reported that
police were afraid of accusations by courts and arrested suspects
that they had wrongly investigated cases, and typically refused to
conduct undercover operations until they were granted warrants to do
so. IJM reported that there have been cases in which court
officials threatened to prosecute IJM investigators and police
involved in undercover operations. During one operation, an IJM
investigator posed as a pedophile seeking to buy sex with minors.
Court officials told the investigator that acting as the "buyer"
essentially made the investigator and police traffickers.

Observers generally perceived evidence collection to be a weakness
of the Cambodian National Police, including the national-level
Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Department and
anti-TIP units at the provincial level. During several brothel
raids involving IJM, when women and girls were taken to police
stations for statements, IJM reported that the rescued victims
refused to make incriminating statements against the brothel owners.
Without victim testimony, police had little evidence to use against
the perpetrators. Police evidence collection limitations were
widely seen as due to a lack of training, equipment, and funding.

Donor countries have continued to press the government on
anti-corruption efforts and passage of an anti-corruption law that
is consistent with international standards. The government has
missed multiple deadlines for passage and implementation. Donors
have also pushed for the establishment of an independent
anti-corruption commission. In 2006, the government established an
Anti-Corruption Body to combat corruption but it remains largely

The Supreme Council of Magistracy (SCM) has the power to appoint and
remove judges, but does not use this power except in rare
situations, and in the past there was evidence that disciplinary
actions were often politically motivated. The SCM also does not
have investigative resources to respond to allegations of
corruption. However, in an important move that sent a signal that
corruption will not be tolerated, in August 2007 a government decree
removed a judge in the SCM who was also the President of the Appeals
Court based on suspicions of corruption. The MOJ rotates judicial
personnel every four years in the hope that the movements will
lessen opportunities for corruption. In January 2009, SCM imposed
disciplinary actions on three provincial judges for non-TIP related
misconduct and transferred 25 provincial and municipal judges and
prosecutors as part of routine rotation efforts.

2D. (SBU) To what extent does the government systematically monitor
its anti-trafficking efforts (on all fronts — prosecution, victim
protection, and prevention) and periodically make available,
publicly or privately and directly or through regional/international
organizations, its assessments of these anti-trafficking efforts?

The MOSAVY has a database to keep track of repatriated victims and
the MOI has a database to track police intelligence, investigations,
and arrests of sex crime offenders. The MOJ, with assistance from
UNICEF, started collecting information in 2007 for a database of
court cases involving children. However, only a few courts provided
statistics for the MOJ database. In March 2008, the NTF initiated
the first phase of a nationwide data collection system that will
eventually incorporate statistics from existing databases into one
consolidated database.

Starting in August 2007, the NTF produced periodic reports on the
government’s anti-TIP efforts. The reports focused mainly on
anti-TIP prosecution efforts with statistics on arrests and
prosecutions. Each provincial working group is expected to submit a
bi-weekly report to the NTF; however, few of the provincial working
groups have been able to follow through with the regular reporting

PHNOM PENH 00000114 010 OF 026

requirement to date.


3A. (SBU) Existing Laws against TIP: Does the country have a law or
laws specifically prohibiting trafficking in persons — both for
sexual exploitation and labor? If so, please specifically cite the
name of the law(s) and its date of enactment and provide the exact
language [actual copies preferable] of the TIP provisions. Please
provide a full inventory of trafficking laws, including non-criminal
statutes that allow for civil penalties against alleged trafficking
crimes (e.g., civil forfeiture laws and laws against illegal debt).
Does the law(s) cover both internal and transnational forms of
trafficking? If not, under what other laws can traffickers be
prosecuted? For example, are there laws against slavery or the
exploitation of prostitution by means of force, fraud, or coercion?
Are these other laws being used in trafficking cases?

On February 15, 2008, Cambodia’s new law on the Suppression of Human
Trafficking and Commercial Sexual Exploitation was promulgated and
went into immediate effect. The new anti-TIP law is a comprehensive
law containing provisions criminalizing all forms of trafficking,
including trafficking through debt bondage.

Many of the Cambodian government’s challenges in its fight against
TIP during this reporting period may be attributed to the passage of
the new law. The law combines TIP crimes and other crimes such as
prostitution, pornography, and child sex abuse. Articles on TIP
crimes make up a minority of the law’s articles; however, the law
has been labeled an anti-TIP law (a misnomer), confusing police,
court, and other government officials, and members of NGOs and the
press, as well. Police increased raids on brothels, ostensibly
because of enthusiasm over the new "anti-TIP law." Most of the
raids resulted in the arrests of pimps and brothel owners who were
charged with prostitution crimes. The police and other government
officials apparently wrongly believed that those arrests were part
of the government’s anti-TIP work.

That the new law went into effect without any prior training of
police, court, or other government officials presented obstacles to
effectively implementing the law. Police and court officials were
accustomed to charging child sex exploitation criminals with
debauchery using a general 1996 law. The new law contains articles
to prosecute for child prostitution, sexual acts with a minor, and
indecent acts with a minor, as well as containing more specific
definitions of other TIP crimes than the 1996 law. Untrained judges
and prosecutors continued to charge perpetrators with "debauchery"
("indecent acts" under the new law), despite evidence of more
heinous — and most often trafficking — crimes.

There were also cases of the courts charging TIP perpetrators with
definition articles of the law instead of with articles that
designate activities as crimes and proscribe penalties; also with
penalty articles that did not appear to match the crimes. In
September 2008 the Phnom Penh Municipal Court convicted a human
trafficking perpetrator with Article 3 "Application of this Law
outside the Territory" which states, "This law shall apply to any
felonies or misdemeanors committed outside the territory of the
Kingdom of Cambodia by a Khmer citizen...." The article defines the
scope of the law, it does not designate any activity as illegal and
it does not proscribe a penalty. However, the perpetrator received
a two-year jail sentence under the article, and the notes from the
court indicate that the perpetrator committed a human trafficking
crime. Another instance from the Phnom Penh Court in August 2008
depicts a case in which a woman was abducted to be a prostitute.
The court initially charged the perpetrator with Article 3 but the
judge’s conviction was under Article 11 "Unlawful Removal for
Cross-Border Transfer," an article that does not appear to be
matched to a trafficking in persons crime.

Government officials, especially NTF officials, understood early on
the need for training on the new law. Training efforts to date are
described in Section 3F of this report.
With support from USAID and UNICEF, the Ministry of Justice (MOJ)
published 10,000 copies of the law on Suppression of Human
Trafficking and Commercial Sexual Exploitation in 2008, and
distributed the copies to court, police, and other government
officials. UNICEF provided funding for a legal advisor to work with
the MOJ to draft a commentary on the new law to be distributed to
judges, prosecutors, and other government officials. One goal of
the commentary is to provide clarity on which articles of the law
are trafficking in persons crimes. The commentary is expected to be

PHNOM PENH 00000114 011 OF 026

completed and distributed in mid-2009.

Other relevant laws pertain to the protection of women and children,
and the Labor Law, which prohibits debt labor, slavery, and the
labor of minors. Cambodia’s Labor Law, enacted in 1997, makes child
(under age 15) labor illegal, but allows children aged 12-15 to
engage in light work provided the work is not hazardous to the
child’s health or mental and physical development. The work must
also not affect regular school attendance or participation in
guidance programs or vocational training. However, confusion
regarding the issue of parental consent and the lack of specific
penalties for child labor have prevented successful prosecutions of
child labor in Cambodia. Articles 363 and 368 of the Labor Law set
monetary penalties for violating child labor provisions at 31 to 60
times the basic monthly wage.

Articles 172-181 of the Labor Law generally proscribe certain forms
of hazardous child labor. Persons 15-18 years old may only work in
non-hazardous occupations. Responsibility for determining whether
jobs are either "light" or "hazardous" rests with the Labor Advisory
Committee (LAC). The Labor Law also prohibits the hiring of someone
to pay off debt.

In December 2007 and January 2008, the Ministry of Labor and
Vocational Training (MOLVT) signed into force six declarations, one
of which defined hazardous work as work that is detrimental to the
health and physical development of children. The declaration
includes a determination of the types of light work, limits the
working hours of children ages 12 to 14 to no more than four hours
on school days and seven hours on non-school days, and forbids them
to work between the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. The other five
of the six declarations include: (1) working and living conditions
in plantations, (2) working conditions in the garment and foot wear
sectors, (3) working conditions in the fishing industry, (4) working
and living conditions in brick-making enterprises, and (5) working
and living conditions in the salt production industry.

3B. (SBU) Punishment of Sex Trafficking Offenses: What are the
prescribed and imposed penalties for trafficking people for sexual

Penalties under the Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and
Sexual Exploitation are comprehensive and vary according to crimes
and their severity. According to Article 15 of the Law on
Suppression of Human Trafficking and Commercial Sexual Exploitation,
trafficking people for sexual or other forms of exploitation is
punishable by seven to 15 years in prison. In aggravating
circumstances, such as when the victim is a minor, the perpetrator
is a public official, or the crime is committed by an organized
group, the punishment is 15 to 20 years.

From April to December 2008, the MOI reported arrests in 21 cases of
human trafficking, of which nine were on sex trafficking and 12 on
labor trafficking. There were 62 victims of trafficking for labor
involved in these cases, and 20 victims of sex trafficking. During
the same period, police reported that they arrested five foreign
pedophiles. Statistics from the Phnom Penh Court showed April to
December 2008 convictions of 14 human traffickers, and five
foreigners who sexually abused Cambodian children.

3C. (SBU) Punishment of Labor Trafficking Offenses: What are the
prescribed and imposed penaties for trafficking for labor
exploitation, such as forced or bonded labor? If your country is a
source country for labor migrants, do the government’s laws provide
for criminal punishment — i.e., jail time — for labor recruiters
who engage in recruitment of workers using knowingly fraudulent or
deceptive offers with the purpose of subjecting workers to
trafficking in the destination country? If your country is a
destination for labor migrants, are there laws punishing employers
or labor agents who confiscate workers’ passports or travel
documents for the purpose of trafficking, switch contracts without
the worker’s consent as a means to keep the worker in a state of
service, or withhold payment of salaries as means of keeping the
worker in a state of service?

According to Article 368 of the Labor Law, employers who employ
children less than 18 years of age for "hazardous work," as defined
under Articles 173 to 178 of the Labor Law, are liable to a fine of
31-60 days of the base daily wage. For the hiring of someone to pay
off debt, the penalty is a fine of 61-90 days of the base daily
wage. However, there are no cases of these laws being used to
prosecute traffickers of children under the Labor Law, and lawyers
have claimed it is not feasible to prosecute traffickers under this

PHNOM PENH 00000114 012 OF 026


The new trafficking law provides for criminal punishment for the
illegal recruitment of a person using force, or fraudulent or
deceptive means. Penalties for unlawful movement of a person for
the purpose of exploitation, including for forced labor or services,
is seven to 15 years. If the victim is a minor, the punishment is
15 to 20 years.

Labor export companies are licensed by the government to export
Cambodian laborers to countries such as Thailand, Malaysia and South
Korea. There were reports of these workers falling victim to
trafficking due to the exploitative conditions in destination
countries, especially Malaysia, and a lack of monitoring and
protection in the source country. The labor export companies and
the Cambodian Ministry of Labor acknowledge that the recruiting
agents often retain workers’ passports upon arrival in Thailand and
Malaysia to prevent loss. There were no cases of labor agents being
held responsible for the exploitation of workers, or being
prosecuted in the courts of law. CWCC assisted the return of
trafficking victims from Thailand and Malaysia to Cambodia and
reported that when victims are willing to file a complaint against
labor companies or employers, the NGO challenges the private
companies, mostly succeeding in gaining compensation for the

3D. (SBU) What are the prescribed penalties for rape or forcible
sexual assault? (NOTE: This is necessary to evaluate a foreign
government’s compliance with TVPA Minimum Standard 2, which reads:
"For the knowing commission of any act of sex trafficking... the
government of the country should prescribe punishment commensurate
with that for grave crimes, such as forcible sexual assault (rape)."

Rape is a criminal offense, and punishable by a five to 10 year
prison sentence, according to Article 33 of the UNTAC Law. Although
Cambodia’s penal code provides penalties for rape, convictions are
often not rendered due to the weak judicial system. According to
the new TIP law, sex trafficking of minors under the age of 18 is
punishable by sentences of between 15 to 20 years in prison; and for
persons over the age of 18, the penalty is seven to 15 years in

3E. (SBU) Law Enforcement Statistics: Did the government prosecute
any cases against human trafficking offenders during the reporting
period? If so, provide numbers of investigations, prosecutions,
convictions, and sentences imposed, including details on plea
bargains and fines, if relevant and available. Please note the
number of convicted traffickers who received suspended sentences and
the number who received only a fine as punishment.
Please indicate which laws were used to investigate, prosecute,
convict, and sentence traffickers. Also, if possible, please
disaggregate numbers of cases by type of
TIP (labor vs. commercial sexual exploitation) and victims (children
under 18 years of age vs. adults). If in a labor source country,
did the government criminally prosecute labor recruiters who recruit
workers using knowingly fraudulent or deceptive offers or by
imposing fees or commissions for the purpose of subjecting the
worker to debt bondage? Did the government in a labor destination
country criminally prosecute employers or labor agents who
confiscate workers’ passports/travel documents for the purpose of
trafficking, switch contracts or terms of employment without the
worker’s consent to keep workers in a state of service, use physical
or sexual abuse or the threat of such abuse to keep workers in a
state of service, or withhold payment of salaries as a means to keep
workers in a state of service? What were the actual punishments
imposed on persons convicted of these offenses? Are the traffickers
serving the time sentenced? If not, why not?

From 1996-1999, the Cambodian government arrested 342 offenders of
sexual exploitation and trafficking. From 2000-2004, the
government’s arrest record increased to 1,009 offenders, due to the
formation on May 13, 2002 of the Ministry of Interior’s Anti-Human
Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Department. Since the creation
of the national-level Department, the Cambodian National Police
established provincial-level anti-TIP units within the police
departments of all 23 provinces the capital city.

The MOI Department of Anti-Trafficking and Juvenile Protection
reported 21 cases of human trafficking, involving 30 perpetrators,
between April and December 2008. Five foreigners were arrested on
charges of indecent and sexual acts during the same period.

PHNOM PENH 00000114 013 OF 026

It should be noted that the statistics below may overlap, as a
consolidated database on trafficking is yet to be available;
statistics are only representative of the work of each institution.

The MOJ was unable to provide reliable statistics given its limited
resources and means of communication with the provinces. Out of 13
provincial and municipal courts (not including Phnom Penh) that
provided data to the MOJ, seven courts reported seven TIP case
convictions. Seven other provincial courts reported 40 convictions
on charges of "cross-border transfer." With a general lack of court
training on how to use the new Law on Suppression of Human
Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation, we believe some of these
"cross-border transfer" cases could be trafficking cases; however,
the MOJ was unable to provide detailed information from the
provincial courts and was unable to confirm whether the cases were
trafficking, smuggling, or other crimes. The Phnom Penh Municipal
Court reported that it convicted 14 trafficking in persons
perpetrators, with penalties ranging from two to 20 years. The
court convicted four foreign nationals for sexual abuse of

AFESIP reported the arrest of one suspect and convictions of 21
traffickers in 2008, with penalties ranging between five and 15
years in jail, and civil compensation of between two and 15 million
riel (USD 500 - USD 3,750).

There are no known cases of prosecution of labor recruiters whose
companies are involved in labor trafficking. NGOs reported 24 labor
cases involving legal migrants to Malaysia ending up in exploitative
circumstances, but the companies usually paid compensation to the
victims and avoided formal remedies.

Traffickers generally serve the time sentenced. However, during the
year there were two reported cases of the prison sentences of
foreign pedophiles being suspended - in one of the cases there was
reportedly evidence of trafficking. On September 9, the
Sihanoukville court convicted French pedophile David Makhout of
indecent acts and sentenced him to 18 months in prison. However,
the judge allowed for the suspension of 10 months of the
perpetrator’s sentence. An NGO reported that there was evidence
that Makhout "bought" one of his underage victims from her mother,
and then sexually abused the victim. The general prosecutor of the
Appeals Court immediately filed an appeal of the sentence suspension
and Makhout remained in jail. On July 21, a Sihanoukville Court
judge suspended a three-year sentence of a convicted pedophile,
Nkita Belov, and released him on probation after he spent six
months in prison for sexually abusing two underage boys. There was
reportedly no evidence of trafficking in the Belov case. The
Appeals Court prosecutor was reported to have appealed the case;
however, according to Department of Anti-Human Trafficking and
Juvenile Protection, Belov left Cambodia on August 5 through the
Poipet border into Thailand. Belov’s whereabouts are unknown.

3F. (SBU) Does the government provide any specialized training for
government officials in how to recognize, investigate, and prosecute
instances of trafficking? Specify whether NGOs, international
organizations, and/or the USG provide specialized training for host
government officials.

The NTF, with technical assistance from TAF and funded by USAID,
created a draft script for a victim assistance training video that
will eventually be distributed to police and other government
officials, and to NGOs providing victim assistance services. The
video will demonstrate humane treatment of trafficking victims and
sex workers after brothel raids including: separating victims and
sex workers from arrested suspected perpetrators; providing
appropriate and immediate victim counseling services and referrals
for further services; informing victims and sex workers about what
to expect while at police stations and courts; and, effectively
explaining to victims and sex workers why their statements to police
and court officials are important. The video will also be used to
train police trainers and is expected to be completed in May 2009,
with training to begin in Summer 2009. The training program is a
direct Cambodian government response to the need for screening of
persons rescued during brothel raids for TIP victims, and to reports
of human rights abuses associated with implementation of the new
law, described in Section 2C of this report.

In December 2008, the MOJ and MOI collaborated to conduct a joint
two-day training workshop on Guidelines on the Implementation of the
Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation
(detailed in Section 2C of this report). The training was funded
and partly organized by UNIAP and IJM. Attendance included: six

PHNOM PENH 00000114 014 OF 026

police officers from national-level Department of Anti-Human
Trafficking and Juvenile Protection, 24 police officers from
provincial Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection offices,
21 provincial prosecutors, five staff people of various NGOs working
on trafficking issues, and representatives from UNICEF and The Asia
Foundation (TAF). In addition to sessions explaining human
trafficking articles and sexual exploitation articles of the law,
the Director of the police Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile
Protection Department provided a session on U.S. recommendations for
action in Cambodia.

The government’s Royal Academy for Judicial Professionals (RAJP),
where judges and prosecutors are trained, is planning to incorporate
training on the Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual
Exploitation as standard coursework into its 2009 syllabi. All
student and practicing judges and prosecutors are expected to
receive RAJP training on the law in 2009.

During the reporting period, the NTF conducted a workshop at the
National Assembly on parliamentarians’ and senators’ roles in
promoting the Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual
Exploitation. The workshop was hosted by the National Assembly and
Senate Commissions on Health, Social Affairs, Veteran,
Rehabilitation, Vocational Training, Labor and Women’s Affairs.

In late 2008, the MOJ provided training for select judges and
prosecutors sponsored by the Asia Regional Trafficking in Persons
Project (ARTIP) on the new law, related investigation techniques,
and evidence collection. UNIAP provided 2008 funding for MOJ
officials to train NGO staff and government officials, including
judges, prosecutors, and police officers in Sihanoukville, Siem Reap
and Koh Kong provinces on the new law.

The government, in cooperation with national and international
organizations and businesses such as IOM, IJM, LEASEC, ARTIP and
Microsoft, conducted training for police officers on investigation
techniques, surveillance, witness protection, case preparation and
management of trafficking cases and cases involving sexual abuse of
children. To date, more than 6,000 police officers have attended
specialized training courses, workshops and conferences, and
meetings on human trafficking and law enforcement. Some of these
trainings included instruction on the Law on Suppression of Human
Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation.

In 2008, UNICEF provided training courses for police officers on
investigation and victim welfare techniques for child rape cases.
In the past, UNICEF supported the Cambodian Bar Association to train
lawyers of the Legal Aid Department in children’s rights and to
build their capacity in representing children. The government
relies heavily on training assistance from foreign governments,
international organizations and NGOs. Cambodian law enforcement
officials have participated in training at the International Law
Enforcement Academy (ILEA) in Bangkok.

DHS/ICE and the FBI reported participation of approximately 150
Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, and Sihanoukville police and NGO personnel in
PROTECT Act investigation training during the reporting period.

3G. (SBU) Does the government cooperate with other governments in
the investigation and prosecution of trafficking cases? If
possible, provide the number of cooperative international
investigations on trafficking during the reporting period.

The government continues to cooperate with U.S. law enforcement
officials on trafficking issues and other criminal cases, and also
cooperates with other countries. The United States and a number of
other countries have laws to prosecute their nationals who travel
abroad to sexually exploit children. Since the U.S. PROTECT Act was
passed in 2003, the Cambodian government has cooperated with the
U.S. in 19 cases, five of which have resulted in PROTECT Act
convictions, and two of which have resulted in convictions on
charges other than the PROTECT Act. During the reporting period,
there were four arrests made by the Cambodian National Police for
which DHS/ICE or the FBI are pursuing PROTECT Act charges. As of
February 2009, the Cambodian government was assisting the U.S. with
additional investigations of suspected American child sex
perpetrators in Cambodia.

In October 2004, the Cambodian Minister of Social Affairs signed a
memorandum on combating TIP regionally under the Coordinated Mekong
Inter-Ministerial Initiative on Trafficking process (COMMIT). This
memorandum placed Cambodia on a track to developing a National
Action Plan and taking a regional approach to combating TIP. During

PHNOM PENH 00000114 015 OF 026

the reporting period, the Cambodian government has proven to be
engaged with and dedicated to the COMMIT agenda. The RGC
established a COMMIT National Training Program based on regional
training provided in Bangkok. In 2008, Cambodia trainers provided
instruction on anti-TIP prevention, protection, prosecution, and
policy for 122 government and NGO participants. The Cambodia COMMIT
Taskforce endorsed a December 2008 UNIAP study of Cambodian TIP
victims returned from Thailand (the study is detailed in Section 1D
of this report) with a statement that, "The RGC understands that
identifying the issues challenging accurate victim identification is
critical to ensuring that trafficking victims are correctly
identified and provided with the services and assistance they

The governments of Cambodia and Thailand signed a Memorandum of
Understanding on Bilateral Cooperation for Eliminating Trafficking
in Children and Women and Asisting Victims of Trafficking on May
31, 2003. The MOU requires the two governments to cooperate with
each other to investigate and uncover domestic and cross-border
trafficking of children and women, to conduct repatriation through
diplomatic channels, and to promote bilateral cooperation in the
judicial procedures against trafficking.

In October 2005, Cambodia and Vietnam signed a similar MOU on
trafficking. During the Vietnamese prime minister’s March 2006
visit to Cambodia, Vietnamese and Cambodian officials discussed
cross-border trafficking cases concerning Cambodian child beggars in
Vietnam. During 2008, there were a number of cross border meetings
between Vietnam and Cambodia on the implementation and possible
improvements to the bilateral MOU.

The Cambodian Police and MOJ cooperate with the Malaysian police on
cross-border TIP cases, but the process is still in its infancy.
According to the Law Enforcement Against Sexual Exploitation of
Children (LEASEC) program, the Cambodian government has made the
Malaysian government aware of TIP cases involving Cambodian
nationals in Malaysia since early 2002. LEASEC is a joint project
of the Cambodian government, UNICEF, IOM, World Vision, Save the
Children Norway, and the UN Cambodian Office of the High
Commissioner for Human Rights. Cambodia is now negotiating an MOU
on anti-trafficking with Malaysia similar to the MOU in place with

Under the ARTIP project, police of ASEAN countries cooperate with
each other to exchange information and evidence on trafficking
cases, although there is yet to be a case specifically involving
Cambodia to date.

3H. (SBU) Does the government extradite persons who are charged
with trafficking in other countries? If so, please provide the
number of traffickers extradited during the reporting period, and
the number of trafficking extraditions pending. In particular,
please report on any pending or concluded extraditions of
trafficking offenders to the United States.

The governments of Cambodia and Thailand have an extradition treaty
which came into force in April 2001. The bilateral treaty with
Thailand provides a basis for future cooperation to address
trafficking issues. In March 2005, a Cambodian woman arrested in
Thailand was sentenced to 85 years by a Thai court for trafficking
eight underage Cambodian girls to Thailand for sexual exploitation.
The sentence was reduced to 50 years after the woman admitted her
guilt. The case was hailed as a breakthrough in bilateral
cooperation between Thailand and Cambodia that led to successful
prosecution of a Cambodian trafficker. The Cambodian government
continues to cooperate with foreign governments to expel persons
charged with pedophilia for acts committed in Cambodia so that they
can be prosecuted in their countries of citizenship.

Despite the lack of a bilateral extradition treaty, Cambodia has
cooperated to deport into U.S. custody numerous Americans accused of
being child sex offenders.

3I. (SBU) Is there evidence of government involvement in or
tolerance of trafficking, on a local or institutional level? If so,
please explain in detail.

The Cambodian government has a clear policy against human
trafficking. Senior government officials have spoken on a number of
occasions about a zero-tolerance policy toward human trafficking and
officials involved in trafficking. Because corruption is pervasive
in Cambodia, it is widely believed that some individual Cambodian
officials — including police and judicial officials — are involved

PHNOM PENH 00000114 016 OF 026

in various aspects of human trafficking, but firm evidence leading
to the prosecution of RGC officials is difficult to obtain.

3J. (SBU) If government officials are involved in trafficking, what
steps has the government taken to end such participation? Please
indicate the number of government officials investigated and
prosecuted for involvement in trafficking or trafficking-related
corruption during the reporting period. Have any been convicted?
What sentence(s) was imposed? Please specify if officials received
suspended sentences, or were given a fine, fired, or reassigned to
another position within the government as punishment. Please
indicate the number of convicted officials that received suspended
sentences or received only a fine as punishment.

Senior government officials have often stated that official
corruption that aids or abets trafficking or other crimes will not
be tolerated.

An investigation into the Chhay Hour II brothel case resulted in the
President of the Appeals Court, Ly Vouch Leang, being removed from
that position and from her position as a member of the Supreme
Council of Magistracy for trafficking-related corruption in 2007.
Three judges and one deputy prosecutor of the Appeals Court also
received official letters of reprimand as a result of the same
investigation. RGC officials reported that the investigations of
these officials are ongoing. The MOI Anti-Human Trafficking and
Juvenile Protection Department Director reported that since his
transfer to the department in 2007, he has administratively
transferred three police officers. During the reporting period, the
Director ensured that a Siem Reap police officer was demoted for
having leaked raid operation information to a brothel owner. In
2007, the Director administratively transferred two officers who
were convicted and sentenced to seven years in prison by the Phnom
Penh Municipal Court in 2006 for trafficking-related corruption.
The officers appealed, effectively stalling the judicial process on
their cases. The Anti-TIP Department Director stated that he had
the two officers removed to inactive positions within the MOI while
their case is under appeal.

In 2006, the RGC prosecuted several police officials for
trafficking-related corruption charges. Colonel Touch Ngim, former
Deputy Director of the Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile
Protection Department, and two other officials under his supervision
were disciplined for taking money from karaoke owners in raided
parlors in Kampong Speu province. In August 2006, the Phnom Penh
Municipal Court convicted Touch Ngim to five years in prison; he is
currently serving his sentence.

3K. (SBU) Is prostitution legalized or decriminalized?
Specifically, are the activities of the prostitute criminalized?
Are the activities of the brothel owner/operator, clients, pimps,
and enforcers criminalized? Are these laws enforced? If
prostitution is legal and regulated, what is the legal minimum age
for this activity? Note that in countries with federalist systems,
prostitution laws may be under state or local jurisdiction and may
differ among jurisdictions.

Prostitution in Cambodia has not been legalized, but the activities
of prostitutes are not criminalized. The new Law on Suppression of
Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation punishes the act of
prostitution in public as a misdemeanor related to the disruption of
public order. According to Article 24, "a person who intentionally
solicits another person in public in order to prostitute him/herself
shall be punished with one to six days in prison and a fine of 3,000
to 10,000 riel (USD 0.75 to USD 2.5)." However, prostitutes may not
be prosecuted for engaging in voluntary sex work. The new law
allows for prosecution of persons who exploited others for sex work,
such as facilitators, intermediaries, pimps, human traffickers, and
brothel owners. The law also stipulates penalties of between two to
20 years in prison, depending on the victim’s age, the severity of
force used by the pimp, and the relationship between the pimp and
the victim.

Punishment for clients of prostituted minors is two to five years in
prison if the prostituted person is 15 to 18 years old; and seven to
15 years if the prostituted person is below age 15. Clients of
adult prostitution are not specifically addressed in the law. As
applied to traffickers and other exploiters of persons for the sex
trade, these laws are being enforced. Under Cambodian law, the
legal age of consent to sexual activity is 15, which is why
penalties for offenses differ depending on the age of the victim.

3L. (SBU) For countries that contribute troops to international

PHNOM PENH 00000114 017 OF 026

peacekeeping efforts, please indicate whether the government
vigorously investigated, prosecuted, convicted and sentenced
nationals of the country deployed abroad as part of a peacekeeping
or other similar mission who engaged in or facilitated severe forms
of trafficking or who exploited victims of such trafficking.

In 2008, 135 Royal Cambodian Armed Forces deminers and four
technical advisors were deployed to Sudan. There is no information
that any of the demining mission members engaged in, or facilitated,
severe forms of trafficking or exploited victims of such
trafficking. However, in May 2008, the NTF provided anti-TIP
training for the demining unit before they departed for Sudan.
Details of the training are included in Section 5G.

3M. (SBU) If the country has an identified problem of child sex
tourists coming to the country, what are the countries of origin for
sex tourists? How many foreign
pedophiles did the government prosecute or deport/extradite to their
country of origin? If your host country’s nationals are
perpetrators of child sex tourism, do the country’s child sexual
abuse laws have extraterritorial coverage (similar to the U.S.
PROTECT Act) to allow the prosecution of suspected sex tourists for
crimes committed abroad? If so, how many of the country’s nationals
were prosecuted and/or convicted during the reporting period under
the extraterritorial provision(s) for traveling to other countries
to engage in child sex tourism?

Cambodia is identified as a destination point for pedophiles.
During the period covered in this report, MOI reported the arrests
of seven foreign nationals (four Americans, two French citizens, and
one Canadian citizen) for sexually abusing Cambodian children. In
2008, the Cambodian courts reported that they convicted a total of
six foreign nationals (one American, one Austrian citizen, one
French citizen, one German citizen, and two Russian citizens).
Prison sentences ranged from 6 months to 13 years and civil
compensation from USD 750 to USD 1,250.

The new Cambodian Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual
Exploitation has extraterritorial coverage, allowing for the
prosecution of Cambodian citizens committing similar crimes in
another country, and the prosecution of a foreigner committing a
crime involving Cambodian victims in another country. There is no
information that Cambodian nationals have traveled to other
countries to engage in child sex tourism.


4A. (SBU) What kind of protection is the government able under
existing law to provide for victims and witnesses? Does it provide
these protections in practice?

The government has no practical ability to protect witnesses at this
time. NGO shelters represent the safest place for witnesses during
the trial phase of a case against a trafficker. Police have no
practical ability to protect NGOs, victims, or witnesses in
high-profile cases. NGOs fill the void by providing shelter and
support to victims through vocational training and start-up capital
to start businesses. A number of shelters and foster home programs
are available for child victims of trafficking.

Despite the existence of some NGO-run shelters, such protection may
not be adequate. For example, in one trafficking case in
Sihanoukville, according to reports by several NGOs, after a
suspected pedophile and his girlfriend who was a suspected
trafficker were released from prison on bail, the girlfriend
threatened the families of the victims and demanded the victims be
returned to her.

The NTF drafted a National Minimum Standards Guide for Victim
Assistance after consultation with NGOs, IOs, and government
officials. The goal of the standards is to ensure appropriate
support, care, and services for human trafficking victims. The
National Minimum Standards are expected to be approved by the RGC
and distributed to government agencies and NGOs in late 2009.

4B. (SBU) Does the country have victim care facilities (shelters or
drop-in centers) which are accessible to trafficking victims? Do
foreign victims have the same access to care as domestic trafficking
victims? Where are child victims placed (e.g., in shelters, foster
care, or juvenile justice detention centers)? Does the country have
specialized care for adults in addition to children? Does the
country have specialized care for male victims as well as female?

PHNOM PENH 00000114 018 OF 026

Does the country have specialized facilities dedicated to helping
victims of trafficking? Are these facilities operated by the
government or by NGOs? What is the funding source of these
facilities? Please estimate the amount the government spent (in U.S.
dollar equivalent) on these specialized facilities dedicated to
helping trafficking victims during the reporting period.

MOSAVY operates temporary shelters for victims of trafficking, rape
and domestic violence in Phnom Penh, but the facility only provides
temporary shelter and basic assistance until victims can be placed
with an NGO-operated shelter and reintegration program. MOSAVY
works closely with AFESIP, IOM, UNICEF, World Vision and a variety
of NGO-managed shelters throughout the provinces to assist initial
reintegration of victims and follow-up investigations. Foreign
victims of trafficking have the same access to victim care
facilities as domestic trafficking victims. However, there is a
limited number of shelters with the ability to provide proper care
for foreign victims due to a lack of foreign language capabilities,
and sometimes due to perceptions about language barriers and
cultural differences.

When TIP victims were repatriated to Cambodia from Thailand, an
IOM-run Transit Center in Poipet staffed with MOSAVY and IOM staff
conducted preliminary assessments and assisted in tracing family
members and reintegrating victims into their home communities, or
placing victims at appropriate NGO shelters to serve their needs.
In 2008, MOSAVY identified 101 victims of trafficking from Thailand
and placed them at the Transit Center in Poipet.

For children who cannot be reintegrated into their communities, the
USG supports IOM and other NGO activities to provide long-term care
and reintegration assistance such as vocational training, job
placement, and income generation.

Most of the NGO shelters assist victims of all forms of violence,
including rape, domestic violence and trafficking. World Hope
International manages a short-term assessment center for victims of
trafficking, but also accepts rape victims when there is space
available. In 2008, the shelter assisted 84 victims of trafficking.
Victims were provided with medical, psychological and legal

In December 2007, the Council for Legal and Judicial Reform, with
support from USAID, published a 65-page Legal Aid Services
directory, a province-by-province, nationwide directory of service
providers including information on which have lawyers or staff who
offer counseling and referral services, and specialties such as
human rights and women and children’s issues, including trafficking
in persons.

4C. (SBU) Does the government provide trafficking victims with
access to legal, medical and psychological services? If so, please
specify the kind of assistance provided. Does the government provide
funding or other forms of support to foreign or domestic NGOs and/or
international organizations for providing these services to
trafficking victims? Please explain and provide any funding amounts
in U.S. dollar equivalent. If assistance provided was in-kind,
please specify exact assistance. Please specify if funding for
assistance comes from a federal budget or from regional or local

Because of inadequate resources, the Cambodian government relies
heavily on bilateral donors and multilateral institutions for
approximately 50 percent of its total annual national budget, and
has few resources to devote to trafficking victims. The government
relies on foreign and domestic NGOs to provide services to victims
of trafficking, a situation that will likely persist for some time.
The MOSAVY continues to fund Seva Kahpia Komar (SKK) (Child
Protection Services), which has primary responsibility for placement
of TIP victims with NGOs for additional care and support. On
occasion, the RGC also provides in-kind contributions to
partnerships with NGOs, such as land, office space and staff

4D. (SBU) Does the government assist foreign trafficking victims,
for example, by providing temporary to permanent residency status,
or other relief from deportation? If so, please explain.

The government’s record in assisting victims of trafficking is
reasonably good, in view of its limited resources and lack of
insitutional capacity. Foreign victim assistance is usually
conducted by an NGO or international organization, or combination of
the two.

PHNOM PENH 00000114 019 OF 026

IOM has cooperated in training Cambodian government officials from
MOSAVY and MOI to repatriate Vietnamese victims. Four Vietnamese
victims were repatriated under this process in 2008 to Vietnam,
bringing the total number of repatriations to Vietnam to 93 since
the initiation of this project in June 1999.

Foreign trafficking victims are provided temporary residence in
shelters while awaiting repatriation. A number of NGO shelters
offer legal, education, and counseling services.

4E. (SBU) Does the government provide longer-term shelter or
housing benefits to victims or other resources to aid the victims in
rebuilding their lives?

As is the case with victim assistance services such as legal,
medical, psychological, and shorter-term shelter services, because
of inadequate resources, the Cambodian government relies on foreign
and domestic NGOs to provide services to victims of trafficking, a
situation that will likely persist for some time.

4F. (SBU) Does the government have a referral process to transfer
victims detained, arrested or placed in protective custody by law
enforcement authorities to institutions that provide short- or
long-term care (either government or NGO-run)?

After a raid, law enforcement authorities conduct an initial
screening for victims of trafficking before referring them to the
provincial and municipal Departments of Social Affairs, where they
are again interviewed for victim determination. MOSAVY reported
that 505 victims of sex trafficking were referred to them by local
police during the reporting period. The municipal and provincial
Department of Social Affairs, Veterans and Youth (DOSAVY) generally
refer the victims to short- or long-term NGO shelters for further
care depending on their needs. According to the MOI, 137 victims of
trafficking were rescued during the reporting period.

4G. (SBU) What is the total number of trafficking victims
identified during the reporting period? Of these, how many victims
were referred to care facilities for assistance by law enforcement
authorities during the reporting period? By social services
officials? What is the number of victims assisted by
government-funded assistance programs and those not funded by the
government during the reporting period?

In Phnom Penh, the government-funded SKK receives TIP victims and
refers them to appropriate NGOs. The police often referred victims
directly to NGOs, but SKK’s role has been recently reinforced as the
primary clearinghouse for victims. Since 2005, World Hope
International has operated a short-term assessment center in Phnom
Penh for referral of TIP victims to longer-term care facilities to
augment the services provided by SKK. Since its establishment in
June 2005, the center has assisted 227 trafficking victims.

The Healthcare Center for Children (HCC) reported that its shelter
in Koh Kong provided services to 143 victims of labor trafficking
and 13 victims of sex trafficking in 2008. Victims were referred to
HCC by other NGOs.

Through an IOM project on repatriation and reintegration of victims,
provincial and municipal DOSAVY officials and IOM staff screen and
refer victims repatriated from Thailand to appropriate NGOs. For
returnees from Vietnam, the project identifies victims of
trafficking and conducts family tracing searches to help victims
locate and reunite with their families. Through this IOM program,
160 Cambodian victims of trafficking from Vietnam and 54 from
Thailand were identified in 2008.

The NTF is currently developing a national minimum standard for
victim assistance and a victim assistance manual in order to better,
and more systematically, provide assistance to victims from the
point of rescue all the way through to reintegration.

4H. (SBU) Do the government’s law enforcement, immigration, and
social services personnel have a formal system of proactively
identifying victims of trafficking among high-risk persons with whom
they come in contact (e.g., foreign persons arrested for
prostitution or immigration violations)? For countries with
legalized prostitution, does the government have a mechanism for
screening for trafficking victims among persons involved in the
legal/regulated commercial sex trade?

Law enforcement authorities conduct an initial screening for victims

PHNOM PENH 00000114 020 OF 026

of trafficking before referring them to the provincial and municipal
Departments of Social Affairs, where they will again be interviewed
for victim determination. MOSAVY reported 505 victims of sex
trafficking were referred to them by local police during the
reporting period.

Prostitution is not legalized in Cambodia. The new Law on the
Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation
criminalizes the act of pimping, but does not punish prostitutes.

4I. (SBU) Are the rights of victims respected? Are trafficking
victims detained or jailed? If so, for how long? Are victims
fined? Are victims prosecuted for violations of other laws, such as
those governing immigration or prostitution?

When trafficking victims are identified, the rights of those victims
are respected in practice, and victims are not treated as criminals.
Victims of trafficking in persons crimes are not detained, jailed,
fined, or deported.

4J. (SBU) Does the government encourage victims to assist in the
investigation and prosecution of trafficking? How many victims
assisted in the investigation and prosecution of traffickers during
the reporting period? May victims file civil suits or seek legal
action against traffickers? Does anyone impede victim access to
such legal redress? If a victim is a material witness in a court
case against a former employer, is the victim permitted to obtain
other employment or to leave the country pending trial proceedings?
Are there means by which a victim may obtain restitution?

The anti-TIP police and prosecutors have become more effective at
gaining witness testimony, but credible fears of retaliation from
traffickers still pose major impediments to witness testimony.
Victims may file civil suits and seek legal action against
traffickers, and a number of NGOs in the legal, human rights, and
social services areas, including the Cambodian Defenders Project
(CDP), encourage victims to do so; the NGOs provide or refer victims
to legal services. However, Cambodia’s weak and frequently corrupt
legal system and lengthy legal process has discouraged victims from
seeking legal redress. NGOs reported that a majority of victims
would prefer an out-of-court settlement as the fast way to obtain
monetary compensation. If the court process is successful, the
victim is expected to wait until a perpetrator finishes a jail
sentence before obtaining compensation. The Law on Suppression of
Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation allows a victim to claim
restitution for damage done by the trafficking perpetrator.

4K. (SBU) Does the government provide any specialized training for
government officials in identifying trafficking victims and in the
provision of assistance to trafficked victims, including the special
needs of trafficked children? Does the government provide training
on protections and assistance to its embassies and consulates in
foreign countries that are destination or transit countries? What
is the number of trafficking victims assisted by the host country’s
embassies or consulates abroad during the reporting period? Please
explain the type of assistance provided (travel documents, referrals
to assistance, payment for transportation home).

As described in greater detail in Section 3F, the NTF, with
technical assistance from TAF and funded by USAID, is creating a
victim assistance training video and related program that will be
distributed in mid-2009 to police and other government officials,
and to NGOs providing victim assistance services. The training
program is a direct Cambodian government response to the need for
screening for TIP victims among persons rescued during police
operations, and to reports of human rights abuses associated with
implementation of the new law, described in Section 2C of this

UNICEF provided technical assistance to the Anti-Human Trafficking
and Juvenile Protection police to improve investigation capacity and
to train officers on the rights of victims while victims are in
police custody.

The LEASEC project has a training component sensitizing police
officials to the special needs surrounding the trafficking and
sexual exploitation of children, including developing procedures and
training police in investigating cases of sexual exploitation and
trafficking in children, and court procedures.

In terms of social services, IOM continued to provide technical
assistance to build the capacity of government officials in victim
assistance. For example, one IOM-funded project helps the

PHNOM PENH 00000114 021 OF 026

provincial Svay Rieng Department of Social Affairs provide services
to vulnerable families so that their children are not trafficked to
Vietnam to participate in child-begging.

UNICEF continued to work closely with the Anti-Trafficking and
Reintegration Office (ATRO) of MOSAVY to improve victim services.
UNICEF also supported nationwide social work training for MOSAVY
national-, provincial- and district-level staff. Building on an
inter-ministerial MOU on victim assistance, UNICEF in 2009 will
assist ATRO to conduct joint monitoring of shelters, together with
NGO partners. In cooperation with UNICEF Thailand, support has been
provided to enhance MOSAVY’s cooperation with Thai authorities on
the repatriation of vulnerable migrants.

Embassies and consulates in foreign countries do not receive
training or sensitization related to trafficking and victim
assistance. However, former National Task Force Chair You Ay in
late 2009 assumed her new position as Cambodian Ambassador to
Thailand, a destination country for many Cambodian migrants and
trafficking victims. Cambodian NGOs working with Cambodian
trafficking victims in Malaysia voice frustration over many RGC
officials’ indifference toward trafficked victims, as well as their
lack of cooperation. However, there are some Cambodian officials
who are willing to cooperate with the NGOs and take a more proactive
approach to helping Cambodian victims outside the country.

CWCC reported assisting the repatriation of 6 victims of trafficking
from Malaysia in 2008, most with the assistance of the Cambodian
embassy. The NGO reported cooperation from the embassy staff in
assisting the repatriation of these victims. The embassy is limited
in its ability to assist the victims financially, but would help
contacting the NGOs and arranging necessary documents to be

4L. (SBU) Does the government provide assistance, such as medical
aid, shelter, or financial help, to its nationals who are
repatriated as victims of trafficking?

In this area, the government relies heavily on international
organizations, foreign and domestic NGOs, and other countries to
provide medical aid and shelter to its repatriated nationals who are
the victims of trafficking. MOSAVY is mandated by the Cambodian
government to provide care and protection to the most vulnerable
population in the country, especially women and children, but in
practice lacks the resources to do so without international or NGO

4M. (SBU) Which international organizations or NGOs, if any, work
with trafficking victims? What type of services do they provide?
What sort of cooperation do they receive from local authorities?

An estimated 90 NGOs work predominantly on trafficking issues, and
of those, roughly 40 NGOs provide some form of service to
trafficking victims. The services include shelter (which usually
includes food, sleeping accommodations, basic health care,
counseling, literacy, and sometimes vocational training), legal
assistance, drop-in centers, and re-integration assistance.
Cambodian government cooperation with these NGOs is good.


5A. (SBU) Did the government conduct anti-trafficking information
or education campaigns during the reporting period? If so, briefly
describe the campaign(s), including their objectives and
effectiveness. Please provide the number of people reached by such
awareness efforts, if available. Do these campaigns target
potential trafficking victims and/or the demand for trafficking
(e.g., "clients" of prostitutes or beneficiaries of forced labor)?
(Note: This can be an especially noteworthy effort where
prostitution is legal. End Note.)

In September 2008, Cambodia’s most popular television station, CTN,
broadcast an anti-TIP documentary created by the NTF with
USAID-funded technical assistance from TAF. The documentary included
footage from five anti-TIP provincial dialogues that occurred
earlier in the year; information about the Law on Suppression of
Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation; messages that the selling
or buying of one’s own children is illegal; interviews with persons
who have been trafficked (facial images were blurred to protect
identities) informing viewers of ways in which perpetrators deceive
victims; information about how viewers can protect themselves from
becoming a victim; and, ways in which local authorities can be

PHNOM PENH 00000114 022 OF 026

helpful regarding anti-TIP.

From June to September 2008, the NTF worked with the international
NGO Equal Access to create and air a series of 30 radio programs
with anti-TIP messages. The program was jointly funded by TAF (with
financial support from USAID) and IOM. The radio programs included
information about the NTF and its activities at the national and
provincial levels; safe migration; and, the content of the Law on
Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation. Equal
Access shows are broadcast on nine radio FM stations covering
approximately 85 percent of Cambodia’s territory and off the coast
of Thailand where there are Cambodian nationals working on fishing
boats. In addition, MOWA staff received training from Equal Access
to conduct Friday call-in radio shows in two provinces on the border
with Thailand and in Sihanoukville. MOWA officials encourage
listeners to call in with questions related to trafficking in
persons, and provide information about how listeners can avoid
becoming victims.

During the rating period, the RGC, in partnership with ILO-IPEC,
World Vision, Friends International, and ChildSafe, conducted a
"Child Safe Tourism" campaign that teaches trainees to identify and
protect potential victims of child sex predators. Training was
conducted in Phnom Penh, Sihanoukville, and Siem Reap with 103
government and NGO participants. Child Safe Tourism workshops
provided training to 1,675 government officials, travel agencies,
entertainment establishments, and university students.

In March 2008 the NTF launched a nationwide anti-trafficking
campaign using positive messages incorporating Khmer values and
cultural traditions to persuade Cambodians to take action against
human trafficking. The NTF recruited American pop singer Robbin
Thompson to record an uplifting anti-trafficking song in Khmer as
part of the national campaign. The song was incorporated into an
anti-TIP public service announcement that was televised nationally,
and into a karaoke video that was distributed to a number of karaoke
parlors. The campaign emphasized trafficking as a national priority
and launched a national dialogue on trafficking via public forums in
five provinces across Cambodia. The forums also served to inform
communities of the new anti-TIP law, forms of trafficking, new
trafficking trends based on NTF data, and the key message that
government authorities and communities must work together to prevent
trafficking. Public forums provided feedback and recommendations
for the development of provincial action plans against trafficking.
Clips of the public service announcement and karaoke video produced
for the campaign are available on www.YouTube.com.

The MOSAVY continued to work closely with UNICEF and local NGOs to
set up community-based networks aimed at conducting early
intervention programs in Prey Veng and Svay Rieng provinces.
Community volunteers are recruited to help identify children at risk
and bring their cases to the commune level for local protection.
More difficult cases are forwarded to the district level.

The Ministry of Tourism (MOT), in collaboration with World Vision,
continued to produce pamphlets and advertisements for tourist
brochures and maps that warn tourists of the penalties for engaging
in child sex. The MOT also provided workshops to hospitality
industry owners and staff on how to identify and intervene in cases
of trafficking or sexual exploitation of children. The MOT
continued to support the ChildSafe Program which builds a network of
people to protect children at risk of trafficking and sexual abuse
in the main tourist centers of Phnom Penh, Sihanoukville, and Siem

In January and February 2009, three of Cambodia’s national
television stations aired 30-minute CWCC-led roundtable discussions
on the impact of migration within Cambodia, and on girls’ rights to
education. The roundtables included representatives from the MOI,
MOWA, Ministry of Education, and Ministry of Labor and Vocational
Training. UNICEF also funded television spots educating the public
about the danger of trafficking and associated penalties. The
Women’s Media Center produced and broadcast a television show to
raise awareness about trafficking in persons and rape.

5B. (SBU) Does the government monitor immigration and emigration
patterns for evidence of trafficking? Do law enforcement agencies
screen for potential trafficking victims along borders?

The Cambodian government’s ability to monitor land borders with
Vietnam, Laos and Thailand, as well as its coastline, continues to
be marginal. Because of its limited resources, the government does
not have the ability to screen for potential trafficking along the

PHNOM PENH 00000114 023 OF 026


In February 2008, the Ministry of Labor and Vocational Training
(MOLVT) launched the Labor Migration Information System (LMIS) to
record the numbers of migrant workers departing Cambodia. According
to the MOLVT, eight companies provided migration statistics for the
system, reporting 2,116 labor migrants to Thailand in 2008. IOM
funded the creation of LMIS in 2007.

The U.S. and Australian governments have helped the Cambodian
government set up computerized immigration systems in its national
airports in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap as well as the overland border
crossings of Poipet and Koh Kong. The British government funded a
border security project which provided training to Cambodian
immigration authorities.

5C. (SBU) Is there a mechanism for coordination and communication
between various agencies, internal, international, and multilateral
on trafficking-related matters, such as a multi-agency working group
or a task force?

In April 2007, the government launched the NTF to coordinate 11
government ministries, three government agencies, and more than 200
international and local anti-TIP NGOs. Deputy Prime Minister and
Minister of Interior Sar Kheng has played a leading role in the
government structure through his chairing of the NTF oversight
mechanism called the "High Level Working Group" (HLWG).

The NTF has taken an innovative approach to synchronize
anti-trafficking services, raise awareness through media campaigns,
and foster government-NGO cooperation to end trafficking. The NTF
is divided into five thematic working groups that focus on
preventing human trafficking, protecting at-risk groups, prosecuting
traffickers, supervising the implementation of MOUs and bilateral
agreements, and monitoring activities at the provincial level. The
working groups are chaired by government ministers with elected NGO
representatives serving as vice chairs.

As stated in Section 2A above, during the reporting period, the NTF
completed its establishment of all 24 municipal and provincial
anti-TIP working groups led by governors and deputy governors (these
administrative areas were changed in late 2008 to 23 provinces and
one capital city). The working groups were instructed by the HLWG
to create provincial action plans, and were generally expected to
monitor entertainment and other establishments for TIP cases; inform
police of suspected cases; and, regularly report activity to the
HLWG. The working groups of Siem Reap and Svay Rieng Provinces have
served as models for other provinces. TAF, funded by USAID, has
worked closely with the model working groups to develop structured,
realistic action plans partly based on input from the 2008
provincial dialogues and aligned with Cambodia’s draft National Plan
of Action. IOM worked closely with the Koh Kong Province working
group to help develop a Koh Kong action plan.

As part of the UN’s Interagency Project on Trafficking in Women and
Children in the Mekong Sub-Region (Cambodia, China, Laos, Burma,
Thailand, and Vietnam), the Ministry of Women’s Affairs chairs the
project’s Coordination Committee in Cambodia.

In 2006, the government established an Anti-Corruption Body in lieu
of a public corruption task force but it remains largely inactive.

5D. (SBU) Does the government have a national plan of action to
address trafficking in persons? If the plan was developed during
the reporting period, which agencies were involved in developing it?
Were NGOs consulted in the process? What steps has the government
taken to implement the action plan?

The Cambodian government, led by the Cambodian National Council for
Children (CNCC), drafted a second five-year National Plan of Action.
The draft plan, meant to cover the period 2006-2010, follows the
National Plan developed in 1999. The plan was initially intended to
cover only children’s issues, and was updated in 2008 to include
trafficking in persons goals. The new plan will harmonize
Cambodia’s ongoing anti-TIP activities with the responsibilities
Cambodia assumed under the Coordinated Mekong Inter-Ministerial
Initiative on Trafficking (COMMIT) MOU of October 2004. The new
plan was developed and finalized in 2006, with input from NGOs and
stakeholders, but with the revisions to include trafficking in
persons, it is still at the Council of Ministers for final review.
Responsibilities over the new plan have now been transferred to the
National Task Force to supervise its implementation. The National
Plan of Action was not yet officially approved at the end of the

PHNOM PENH 00000114 024 OF 026

reporting period; however, many of the activities in the plan have
already been carried out at the national and local level.

Background: The Cambodian government in 1999 established an
inter-ministerial body known as the Cambodian National Council for
Children (CNCC) to address child labor and other related issues; in
July 1999, the CNCC worked with international and national
organizations to develop the first national five-year Plan against
Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation of Children (2000-2004), which
delineated the responsibilities of nineteen ministries and
provincial governments.

As described in detail in Section 5C above, provincial anti-TIP
working groups were tasked by the NTF to develop provincial-level
action plans. Siem Reap and Svay Rieng have the most advanced
action plans to date that have served as models for other

In October 2005, the Cambodian government, represented by Minister
of Women’s Affairs Ing Kantha Phavi, signed a Memorandum of
Understanding with Vietnam to eliminate trafficking in women and
children and assist victims of trafficking.

5E. (SBU) What measures has the government taken during the
reporting period to reduce the demand for commercial sex acts?

The government is limited in its resources to fund programs aimed at
reducing the demand for commercial sex acts. NGOs such as CWCC and
the Women’s Media Center have produced television spots and drama
aimed at educating men not to engage in commercial sex acts. The
shows continued to be televised during the rating period. The
government has been supportive of these programs.

5F. (SBU) What measures has the government taken during the
reporting period to reduce the participation in international child
sex tourism by nationals of the country?

There are no reports of Cambodian nationals participating in child
sex tourism in other countries.

5G. (SBU) Required of posts in countries that have contributed over
100 troops to international peacekeeping efforts (Argentina,
Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Belgium, Benin, Bolivia, Brazil,
Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, Cote d’Ivoire, Croatia,
Egypt, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Fiji, France, Gambia, Germany, Ghana,
Greece, Guatemala, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Italy, Jordan, Kenya,
Korea (South), Malawi, Malaysia, Mali, Mongolia, Morocco, Nepal,
Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal,
Romania, Russia, Rwanda, Senegal, Slovakia, South Africa, Spain, Sri
Lanka, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United
Kingdom, Uruguay, Yemen, Zambia, and Zimbabwe): What measures has
the government adopted to ensure that its nationals who are deployed
abroad as part of a peacekeeping or other similar mission do not
engage in or facilitate severe forms of trafficking or exploit
victims of such trafficking? If posts do not provide an answer to
this question, the Department may consider including a statement in
the country assessment to the effect that "An assessment regarding
Country X’s efforts to ensure that its troops deployed abroad for
international peacekeeping missions do not engage in or facilitate
trafficking or exploit trafficking victims was unavailable for this
reporting period."

On May 30, 2008, the NTF provided an anti-TIP training session to
115 Royal Cambodian Armed Forces troops at the Cambodia Training
Mine/UXO Clearance Center who were preparing to deploy to Sudan on a
one-year de-mining mission. De-mining troops were the only troops
that Cambodia sent on a peacekeeping or similar mission abroad
during the reporting period. The NTF designated a TAF Cambodian
national program officer to conduct the training which covered
topics such as definitions of various types of TIP, an overview of
Cambodia’s anti-TIP and sexual exploitation law, and information
about the RGC’s commitment to combating TIP.

Anti-TIP Hero

6. APLE Cambodia Country Director Seila Samleang

Seila Samleang began as an investigator with Action Pour Les Enfants
(APLE) Cambodia in 2005, and became the Cambodia office’s first
Cambodian national Country Director in 2007. Since his assumption
of the director position, Seila has effectively used the press to
help pressure the government to pay closer attention to TIP court

PHNOM PENH 00000114 025 OF 026

cases. When courts have convicted child sex abusers on charges that
seem inappropriately matched with the crime, Seila provides
assessments to media outlets, government officials, NGOs, and the
international community in Phnom Penh regarding the inconsistencies
of court decisions. His efforts have informed MOJ and NTF officials
about how courts are using a new, complicated Law on Suppression of
Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation, so that the MOJ and the
Royal Academy of Judicial Professionals can better target training
of judges and prosecutors to properly use the law. Under Seila’s
leadership, APLE has rescued and protected hundreds of children from
child sexual exploitation and abuse. APLE Cambodia’s mission is to
reduce the incidence of child sexual exploitation and associated
human trafficking crimes in Cambodian. The organization assists the
Cambodian National Police with investigations and raids to increase
the number of successful prosecutions, convictions and serious
sentences of sex predators. The organization also seeks to:
increase the level of access to legal protection for victims; reduce
the effects of trauma caused by pedophiles; and, improve current
conditions of impunity and legal accountability. Since APLE was
established in Cambodia in 2003, 187 victims have been rescued, and
82 perpetrators arrested and sent to court to face trial.

Best Practices

7. Cambodia’s anti-TIP National Task Force: In April 2007, the RGC
took the lead in combating trafficking launching a National Task
Force (NTF) to coordinate 11 government ministries, three government
agencies, and more than 200 international and local anti-TIP NGOs.
The NTF has taken an innovative approach to synchronize
anti-trafficking services, raise awareness through media campaigns,
and foster government-NGO cooperation to end trafficking. Deputy
Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sar Kheng has also played a
leading role in anti-TIP efforts at the highest levels of the
government. DPM Sar Kheng serves as Chair of the NTF oversight
mechanism, the "High Level Working Group" (HLWG). The NTF is
divided into five thematic working groups that focus on preventing
human trafficking, protecting at-risk groups, prosecuting
traffickers, supervising the implementation of MOUs and bilateral
agreements, and monitoring activities at the provincial level. The
working groups are chaired by government ministers with elected NGO
representatives serving as vice chairs. Working groups and smaller,
targeted cluster groups address priority areas, and have already
resulted in important achievements, such as:

— 2008: Creation of provincial level working groups in all 24 of
Cambodia’s provinces and municipalities. Provincial working groups
are expected to report to the HLWG Level Working Group, and to enact
provincial-level action plans. Viable action plans have been
drafted for at least two provinces, and serve as model action plans
for all provinces.

— March 2008: The NTF’s launch of a nationwide anti-trafficking
campaign using positive messages incorporating Khmer values and
cultural traditions to persuade Cambodians to take action against
human trafficking. The NTF recruited American pop singer Robbin
Thompson to record an uplifting anti-trafficking song (in Khmer) as
part of the national campaign. The campaign emphasized trafficking
as a national priority and launched a national dialogue on
trafficking with public forums in five provinces across Cambodia.
The forums also served to inform communities of the new anti-TIP
law, forms of trafficking, new trafficking trends based on NTF data,
and the key message that government authorities and communities must
work together to prevent trafficking. Public forums provided
feedback and recommendations for the development of provincial
action plans against trafficking.

— Ongoing: Preparations for ChildSafe practices training for heads
of all provincial task forces. ChildSafe training teaches
trafficking and exploitation prevention measures.

— Ongoing: Development of a nationwide set of indicators for
trafficking data, and standardized methodologies for data
collection. Resulting data will assist the government to develop
effective anti-TIP policies. The NTF launched its first national
data mechanism in June 2008.

— Ongoing: Research and assessment to set a national standard for
victim assistance, including a standardized training program and
toolkit for government and NGO service providers. The national
standard will ensure that every victim, regardless of the location
or agency from which they receive assistance, can expect to receive
a tested and effective standard of care.

PHNOM PENH 00000114 026 OF 026

Staff Time

8. (SBU) Political Officers Janet Deutsch, Melissa Sweeney, and
Gregory Lawless drafted and edited this submission and estimated
that the drafting of this report required 40 hours of staff time;
separately two LES political assistants spent 80 hours helping draft
this report. Embassy POC for this cable is Acting Deputy Chief of
Mission Gregory Lawless (T. 855-023-728-126).


9. (U) Following are abbreviations used in this report:

ADHOC: Association de Defense des Droit de l’Homme (Human Rights
Defense Association)
AFESIP: Agir pour les Femmes en Situation Precaire
AIDTouS: Association Internationale pour le Developpement le
Tourisme et la Sant
APLE: Action Pour Les Enfants
ARCPPT: Asia Regional Cooperation to Prevent People Trafficking
CDP: Cambodian Defender’s Project
CNCC: Cambodian National Council for Children
CNCW: Cambodian National Council for Women
COMMIT: Coordinated Mekong Ministerial Initiative against
CWCC: Cambodian Women’s Crisis Center
CWDA: Cambodian Women Development Agency
DOSAVY: Department of Social Affairs, Veterans, and Youth
Rehabilitation (local jurisdiction of MOSAVY)
IJM: International Justice Mission
ILEA: International Law Enforcement Academy
ILO-IPEC: International Labor Organization-International
Program on the Elimination of Child Labor
IOM: International Organization for Migration
LEASEC: Ministry of Interior Law Enforcement Against Sexual
Exploitation of Children Project
LSCW: Legal Support for Children and Women
MOI: Ministry of Interior
MOJ: Ministry of Justice
MOSAVY: Ministry of Social Affairs, Veterans, and Youth
MOLVT: Ministry of Labor and Vocational Training
MOT: Ministry of Tourism
MOWA: Ministry of Women’s Affairs
NTF: The National Task Force to Eliminate Trafficking in Persons
RGC: Royal Government of Cambodia
RSJP: Royal School of Judges and Prosecutors
SKK: Seva Kahpia Komar (Service for Protection of Children)
UNOHCHR: United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for
Human Rights
UNDP: United Nations Development Program
UNIAP: United Nations Inter-Agency Project Against
Trafficking of Women and Children in the Mekong Sub-Region
UNICEF: United Nations Children’s Fund
UNTAC: United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia
USAID: United States Agency for International Development
WMC: Women’s Media Center