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Net child sex abuse rising

Sexual exploitation of children in Cambodia via the Internet has increased dramatically in recent years and private sector help is needed to combat it, British and Cambodian officials said Monday.

india Updated: Oct 10, 2005 19:27 IST
AFP
AFP
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Sexual exploitation of children in Cambodia via the Internet has increased dramatically in recent years and private sector help is needed to combat it, British and Cambodian officials said Monday.

"We know that child sex tourism and online abuse is a serious and continuing concern in Cambodia," British ambassador David Reader said while opening a training course for over 100 Cambodian law enforcement officers.

"We also know that perpetrators are not always brought to justice," he told the participants in the two-week course organised by Britain's National Criminal Intelligence Service and National Crime Squad, and Microsoft.

"You, the legal and law fraternity, need to be vigilant and ensure that justice is upheld," Reader said.

Participants were shown how foreigners lure children to hotel rooms and take pornographic photographs which are then posted on the Internet.

Reader said the fight against paedophilia was not solely the work of the government and non-governmental organisations.

"The private sector too can play a crucial role in tracking down those who prey on children," he said.

Cambodian Justice Minister Ang Vong Vathana said pornographic pictures of children and women have been distributed via the Internet to other forms of electronic media, including mobile phones.

"These activities have become a complicated offense and have connections with other countries as well," he said.

Ang Vong Vathana urged better cooperation among Southeast Asian countries and their respective law enforcement officers to stop the phenomenon.

The Cambodian government has recently instructed Internet service providers to block offensive sites, the minister added.

A slew of foreigners have been nabbed in Cambodia in recent years as part of a campaign to crack down on paedophiles, with several heavy jail sentences meted out and a number of foreigners deported to face trial at home.

First Published: Oct 10, 2005 19:27 IST