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Information Minister Defends Stance on Press

Information Minister Khieu Kanharith said Thursday press freedom in Cambodia was the best in Southeast Asia and reminded journalists they were under an obligation to follow professional ethics.

Speaking to VOA Khmer on World Press Freedom Day and responding to a call Wednesday from a leading rights group for the government to close his ministry, Khieu Kanharith said Cambodia had an extremely liberal press environment.

"Not only can reporters write a story, but they can invent stories as well. That's unique to Cambodia," he said.

"Cambodia is worried about certain reporters that might be using their press freedoms in the wrong direction, and what all the press have to be concerned with is concentrating on the ethics of their profession," Khieu Kanharith said. "They can say anything they want after that."