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Human Rights Council - 24th Regular Session

Item 10
Australian Statement for the Interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Cambodia

24 September 2013


Australia welcomes Cambodia’s engagement with the Special Rapporteur and urges Cambodia to work towards ensuring that its citizens enjoy the equality and freedoms set out in its Constitution.

We welcome the fact that the recent elections were held in a largely peaceful environment.

We urge both major political parties to work together to ensure that all human rights, including equality before the law, are respected, and that all Cambodians are treated equitably.

The Special Rapporteur has reported the need for electoral reform. Australia welcomed the joint statement released by the major political parties on 16 September committing them to work to establish a mechanism to reform the election process.

A strong and vibrant liberal democracy requires that citizens have confidence in the electoral processes; that concerns are addressed transparently; and that all views can be heard.

Australia notes the progress of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia in bringing former Khmer Rouge leaders to account for crimes against the Cambodian people, but remains concerned about the Chambers’ financial situation. We urge the Cambodian Government to honour its commitments to the Chambers in this regard.

Australia thanks the Special Rapporteur for the thorough analytical reports he has produced. We urge the mandate for this important mission be extended.