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Groups Support Role of UN Rights Critic

Human rights groups said Wednesday they support a UN envoy's role in raising Cambodia's human rights violations at a meeting in Geneva later this month.

The International Human Rights Council will meet March 19, where UN special envoy Yash Ghai is expected to deliver a critical rights report on Cambodia.

"The office of the UN Special Representative on Human Rights in Cambodia needs to continue, as increasing political acts of violence, intimidation and suppression will contribute to destabilization of the country, due to the lack in rule of law, impacts and culture of impunity," Ouk Virak, president of the Cambodian Center for Human Rights said in a statement.

Ghai has maintained a prickly relationship with Prime Minister Hun Sen, and government officials declined to meet with him on his last in-country visit.