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Cambodia

Foreigners arrested in Cambodia for ‘pornographic dancing’ at party

Official: ‘We cracked down on them because they committed activities that are against our culture’

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 28 January, 2018, 3:20pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 28 January, 2018, 11:06pm

Cambodia has arrested 10 foreigners for “singing and dancing pornographically”, police said Sunday, as the kingdom cracks down on racy behaviour at popular tourist sites.

The group, which could face a year in prison on pornography charges, was arrested Thursday at a villa in Siem Reap, the town connected to Cambodia’s famed ancient ruins of Angkor Wat.

Duong Thavry, chief of the Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Department in Siem Reap, said that some of those arrested were expats and others were tourists who had been in the country for several months.

“We cracked down on them because they committed activities that are against our culture,” she said.

Cambodia’s national police said on its website that authorities had arrested six British nationals, two Canadians, one New Zealander and one defendant whose citizenship was not identified.

All were arrested for “singing and dancing pornographically”, the police said in the weekend post, which showed photos of pairs simulating various sexual positions at a party.

Several people in the lewd images, however, do not appear in the group shot of the 10 defendants later posted by the police.

Authorities said dozens of tourists were let go after being informed of their inappropriate actions.

Britain’s Foreign Office said in a statement that it was in contact with the British nationals arrested in Cambodia, though it said the number was five, not six.

Tourists visiting Angkor Wat normally stay in Siem Reap, which has a number of hotels and late-night bars and clubs.

In recent years, authorities have clamped down on visitors posting revealing images of themselves at the nearby temple sites and in 2016, management said it would bar tourists wearing skimpy clothes.

The Angkor Archeological Park, a World Heritage Site, contains the remains of the different capitals of the Khmer Empire, dating from the 9th to the 15th centuries.

It is Cambodia’s most popular tourist attraction, receiving millions of visitors each year.