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Cambodia: US military cooperation only postponed

Tuesday - 8/13/2013, 6:40am  ET

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia (AP) -- Cambodia is disputing a U.S. claim that it has suspended or canceled international military cooperation programs with Washington in the wake of the country's recent disputed election.

Lt. Gen. Nem Sowath, the senior officer in charge of political and foreign policy for the Defense Ministry, said Tuesday that Cambodia had neither suspended nor canceled participation in such programs. He said at a news conference that military activities were postponed by mutual agreement because Cambodia was not prepared.

State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf told reporters Monday in Washington that Cambodia's Defense Ministry had postponed or canceled a number of programs with the U.S. and other nations.

Such a move by Cambodia could pre-empt sanctions by Washington if it judged the July 28 polls unfair, or Cambodia a human rights abuser.

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