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NZ assistance for Cambodian elections

NZ assistance for Cambodian elections

New Zealand is giving $455,000 to help Cambodia run its national elections in July this year, Aid Minister Marian Hobbs announced today.

The money will be used to update the country’s electoral roll so that all voting age citizens are registered. The funding will help newly elected commune councils manage the registration process and will improve the efficiency of this and future elections.

"Cambodia has suffered three decades of war and violence and faces huge obstacles in trying to create a modern democratic society," Marian Hobbs said. "New Zealand has played a significant part in Cambodia’s development through peacekeeping, other government aid activities and VSA, and this contribution continues that commitment.

"The elections, scheduled for July 27, will be a significant step forward in building a peaceful electoral process and making sure ordinary Cambodians have a real say in how their country is run."

The New Zealand funds will be provided by NZAID, the government's overseas development agency, to the UN Development Programme, which is coordinating overseas assistance for the electoral process.

A total of about $US12.5 million will be needed to run the election, of which $US5 million will be provided by the Cambodian Government and the remainder by overseas donors.

NZAID contributed $NZ144,000 to assist with the running of the 2002 Cambodian commune council elections.

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