>Cambodia snipes at former UN human rights envoy

>Mr. Yash Ghai (L) and Mr Hun Sen (R).

<!– var showPageNavTop = 1; var showPageNavBot = 1; var showPageNavAll = 0; var PageMarker = '<!–page-\>'; var PageContent= ' Phnom Penh – Cambodia\'s government strongly criticized former UN human rights special envoy Yash Ghai Monday with a letter to the editor published in a leading national newspaper.

Ghai resigned from the post a week ago. His relationship with the Cambodian government broke down amidst claims from Ghai that the government ignored him and from the government he was not neutral.

The national English-language Cambodia Daily newspaper published a letter Monday from Information Minister and government spokesman Khieu Kanharith rebutting quotes the paper ran Wednesday of Ghai\’s resignation speech, which was read to the UN by a proxy.

The letter was entitled \’Ghai\’s quotes only prove his incompetence,\’ and accused Ghai of lying to incite animosity.

On Wednesday, the paper also quoted Ghai as criticizing the UN and the international community, saying they failed to support him.

\'(Prime Minister Hun Sen) called me \’deranged,\’ \’short-term tourist\’ and \’lazy,\’ while the government spokesman Khieu Kanharith called me uncivilized,\’ the paper quoted Ghai, a Kenyan national, as saying. \’Mr Kanharith said that Kenyans are rude and savage.\’

In a strong letter, Kanharith strongly denied the final point, saying he would never look down on an entire nation or people.

\’The accusation made by Mr Yash Ghai is only aimed at creating animosity … and this shows his despicable attitude and manner are unfit for the high role given to him by the UN,\’ he wrote.

Cambodia has said it will welcome a new UN rights envoy but had refused to work further with Ghai, saying he was biased and favoured groups whom the government views as pro-opposition and claims sometimes misrepresent human rights issues for political gain.

‘; PrintArticle();//–>

Phnom Penh – Cambodia’s government strongly criticized former UN human rights special envoy Yash Ghai Monday with a letter to the editor published in a leading national newspaper.

Ghai resigned from the post a week ago. His relationship with the Cambodian government broke down amidst claims from Ghai that the government ignored him and from the government he was not neutral.

The national English-language Cambodia Daily newspaper published a letter Monday from Information Minister and government spokesman Khieu Kanharith rebutting quotes the paper ran Wednesday of Ghai’s resignation speech, which was read to the UN by a proxy.

The letter was entitled ‘Ghai’s quotes only prove his incompetence,’ and accused Ghai of lying to incite animosity.

On Wednesday, the paper also quoted Ghai as criticizing the UN and the international community, saying they failed to support him.

‘(Prime Minister Hun Sen) called me ‘deranged,’ ‘short-term tourist’ and ‘lazy,’ while the government spokesman Khieu Kanharith called me uncivilized,’ the paper quoted Ghai, a Kenyan national, as saying. ‘Mr Kanharith said that Kenyans are rude and savage.’

In a strong letter, Kanharith strongly denied the final point, saying he would never look down on an entire nation or people.

‘The accusation made by Mr Yash Ghai is only aimed at creating animosity … and this shows his despicable attitude and manner are unfit for the high role given to him by the UN,’ he wrote.

Cambodia has said it will welcome a new UN rights envoy but had refused to work further with Ghai, saying he was biased and favoured groups whom the government views as pro-opposition and claims sometimes misrepresent human rights issues for political gain.

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