Cambodia and the U.S. will resume negotiations toward the settlement of a USD445 million debt accumulated by the Asian country’s U.S.-backed military regime in the early 1970s, Reuters reports. An agreement was reached during the recent visit of U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to Cambodia. Clinton said she will send a team to reopen the talks, which were last conducted in 2006. The debt was accumulated by the Lon Nol government, which rose to power after staging a U.S.-backed coup in 1970 before being toppled by the Khmer Rouge regime in 1975.
“You could have some repayment, you could have debt for nature, you could have debt for education. There are things that the government of Cambodia could do that would satisfy the need to demonstrate some level of accountability but, more importantly, to invest those funds in the needs of the people of Cambodia,” Clinton said during her visit, outlining ways on how the debt could be erased.