While the US has done much work to punish sex traffickers in Cambodia, many other countries fail to do so, leaving children in danger, the director of a rights group said Thursday.
“There are some countries that ignore or don’t pay full attention to punishing and trying their own citizens who commit this in Cambodia,” Samleang Seila, Cambodia’s country director for Action Pour Les Enfants, told “Hello VOA.”
Some nations support the release of alleged perpetrators from detention or seek reduced punishment from the government, he said.
“Some countries apply [the law] well and firmly, such as the US, but some countries need to take similar action,” he said.
Peng Maneth, a lawyer and second guest on “Hello VOA” Thursday, said Cambodia has enough laws to punish sexual predators against crimes such as pedophilia, debauchery, child exploitation and other immoral acts, with sentences up to 20 years in prison.
Samleang Seila met with US Congresswoman Lorreta Sanchez in Siem Reap this week, where she was visiting to learn about child trafficking, he said. In the meeting, he raised the issue of Americans traveling to Cambodia for sex tourism.
Most sex tourists come from the EU, US and Asia, he said Thursday. Since 2003, Action Pour Les Enfants has rescued more than 360 victims of trafficking, he said.