WASHINGTON DC —
Foreign Affairs Minister Hor Namhong addressed the UN’s General Assembly on Monday, in a speech that focused more on the threat of the Islamic State and international conflicts than it did on Cambodian issues.
Hor Namhong told the Assembly that Cambodia supports joint international efforts to fight terrorists, and he requested that the international community come together to combat the Ebola virus.
“While extremism is threatening the world peace and security, the spread of epidemic infection of Ebola in Africa has also become one of the worst threats to the world today,” he said. “It is of critical importance that international community should make concerted efforts to address this global challenge in an effective and timely manner.”
Cambodia has participated in UN peacekeeping operations, with more than 2,000 personnel, he said.
Meanwhile, Cambodia continues to work to reduce poverty under UN benchmarks, he said.
Cambodia sets its poverty reduction target to 19.5 percent by 2015, but it has already reached that goal, cutting its poverty rate to 19 percent in 2013, he told the Assembly.
Hor Namhong did not address widespread criticism of Cambodia’s human rights efforts or a controversial deal with Australia to help resettle unwanted refugees.
Hor Namhong said Cambodia has faced devastating flooding this year that killed 45 people and affected 100,000 more. And he touted Cambodia’s success in combating HIV and AIDS, where it has reduced the prevalence of the virus to 0.6 percent in 2013.
He called on developed countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, which are major contributors to global warming.