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Thirty-Two U.S. Embassy Workers in Cambodia Fired Over Alleged Sharing of Pornography


U.S. Ambassador to Cambodia William Heidt, rear center, gives a press conference at the U.S. Embassy in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2017. Heidt has delivered a sharp response to allegations by Prime Minister Hun Sen that Washington is seeking to dislodge his government, denying the allegations and warning that Cambodia is doing itself damage international with its anti-American campaign. (AP Photo/Heng Sinith)

Four sources told Reuters that pornographic videos and photographs, including some featuring people under the age of 18, were shared in a Facebook Messenger chat group.

The United States embassy in Cambodia has fired 32 people after they were allegedly caught sharing pornographic material in a non-official chat group, several sources familiar with the matter said on Friday.

Four sources told Reuters that pornographic videos and photographs, including some featuring people under the age of 18, were shared in a Facebook Messenger chat group.

Some of the images were seen by the wife of an embassy worker who reported the incident to an official at the embassy. The matter was then forwarded to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the sources said.

“They had their identification cards taken and some of their phones checked,” a former U.S. embassy staff member told Reuters on condition of anonymity.

He said the 32 embassy workers included Cambodians and Cambodian-Americans. Many were guards and some were clerical staff. There were no diplomats among them, they said.

Two of the sources, both of whom work at the embassy, confirmed the dismissals.

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