Jump to content
BANGKOK
geovalin

Cyprus opposition wants to know how Cambodian elite got passports

Recommended Posts

ATHENS (Reuters) - Opposition parties in Cyprus on Thursday called on the government to explain how relatives and allies of Cambodia’s leader acquired Cypriot passports under a secretive investment for citizenship scheme.

 

A Reuters investigation revealed that family members and allies of Cambodia’s long-time prime minister, Hun Sen, have overseas assets worth tens of millions of dollars and have used their wealth to buy foreign citizenship - a practice Hun Sen has decried as unpatriotic.

 

Cyprus declined to comment on individual cases.

Opposition lawmaker Irene Charalambides, who is also a special representative on fighting corruption for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, issued a scathing post on social media saying the disclosure made Cyprus the object of international ridicule.

 

Her party, AKEL, also questioned how passports could be given to individuals “who probably couldn’t find Cyprus on the map”.

“Where does the issuance of passports stop? Until when will we stop apologising internationally? Finally, there is a fire with the smoke,” Charalambides wrote on Facebook.

 

“This is an international ridicule, which is not covered by any justification. The Minister of Interior is required to answer.”

 

Eight family members or allies - including Cambodia’s police chief who has been instrumental in clamping down on dissent, and its finance minister - sought and received Cypriot citizenship in 2016 and 2017, Reuters reporting showed.

 

Since the inception of the citizenship scheme in 2013, and until 2018, the Cypriot government had approved 1,864 applications.

The European Commission warned in a January report that what it called “golden passports” could help organised crime groups infiltrate Europe and raised the risk of money laundering, corruption and tax evasion.

 

While Cyprus authorities say their processes are transparent, who gets citizenship is protected by data laws.

The Cyprus government did not respond to questions from Reuters before publication of the report on the Cambodians.

 

After publication, a spokesman said the citizenship programme was “absolutely credible and transparent” while declining to discuss individual cases. It also said checks and balances in the system had been tightened in recent years.

 

The information in the Reuters report “will be taken into serious consideration”, the government spokesman said.

The Greens and Citizens Alliance Movement, long critical of the secrecy surrounding the scheme, said: “Only transparency can dig us out of the hole recent governments have put us in with this programme.”

 

Editing by Nick Macfie

 

-- REUTERS

  • Haha 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, amdy2206 said:

The same way anyone gets elite (I really hate that word) passports. They pay for them! Simple.

i hope you don't compare the thai elite <deleted myself> with real CITIZENSHIP

 

one is not worth the paper written on

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Cyprus opposition wants to know how they got the passports.

All I and my Cambodian friends want to know is: will they use these passports to LEAVE (for good) and when?

Sent from my SM-J701F using Thailand Forum - Thaivisa mobile app

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...