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US Embassy Hosts Election Journalism Course Journalists for Elections

Local journalists began three days of training at the US Embassy Wednesday to improve coverage of national elections next year.

The embassy said it hoped to strengthen the role of the media in the elections, scheduled for July 2008.

The course was hosted by journalists from the US and taught 27 journalists from 16 Cambodian institutions.

"In a democracy a free press is very important in helping the voters make informed choices in the election," US Embassy spokesman Jeff Daigle said.

"It's important to write about what the candidates are saying, and what's important to the candidates," said Joyce Barrett, an instructor for the course from Women's Wear Daily. "I think it's important to accurately portray what's on the mind of the voters, and the reaction from the candidates on how they address those issues."

The course emphasized fair reporting of each political party and the importance of unbiased stories.