Group decries Cambodia land deal

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia — An international human rights group charged on Thursday that a massive land redistribution program spearheaded by Cambodia’s strongman prime minister is unfair, open to corruption, and politically motivated.

New York-based Human Rights Watch said in a report that the program, which began a year ago, was designed to be closely identified with Prime Minister Hun Sen ahead of national elections next month, with extensive coverage in state media but no oversight.


The report urged Cambodia’s aid donors — who provide a major portion of the country’s budget — ‘‘to insist that the program be reformed into a professional and apolitical process, or canceled.’’

Tith Sothea, a government spokesman, described the report as ‘‘baseless’’ and ‘‘garbage’’ and accused Human Rights Watch Asia director Brad Adams of ‘‘never speaking positively about Cambodia.’’

Associated Press

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