Cambodia urges int'l solidarity, not finger-pointing, politicization of COVID-19

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Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Prak Sokhonn has called for international solidarity against COVID-19, not finger-pointing and politicization, according to a foreign ministry's press statement on Saturday.

Sokhonn made the remarks during the 28th ASEAN ( the Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Regional Forum (ARF) held via video link on Friday.

"H.E. Deputy Prime Minister emphasized on the ARF's importance as a multilateral forum for consultative dialogue, confidence-building, and trust promotion for the entire Asia-Pacific, and that this should be leveraged upon to consolidate international solidarity against the COVID-19 pandemic without finger-pointing and politicization," the statement said.

The statement said that during the meeting, the ARF ministers emphasized the importance of enhancing regional and international solidarity and cooperation towards a collective and effective response to and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Chea Munyrith, president of the Cambodian Chinese Evolution Researcher Association, last week called on some Western countries not to politicize the COVID-19 origin-tracing issue, saying that any origin-tracing should be scientific, not political.

"Virus origin-tracing is a scientific issue, which can only be determined by scientists, not politicians," he said in an article published on the Fresh News website.

Munyrith also accused the Western countries of ignoring the facts and putting the blame on China to cover up their own poor dealings with COVID-19 and to divert public attention from criticizing their governments.

"I believe that science is fair, and the world can be deceived just for a while, not forever," he said. "I hope that the World Health Organization (WHO) will uphold the spirit of science, professionalism, and objectivity, oppose the politicization of the COVID-19 origin-tracing issue, and support the traceability work in the right way."

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