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25 Apr 2002

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Every year the factory donates food and clothes to the Cambodian Red Cross and this year there was to be a small ceremony to mark the occasion, hosted by the Society's President at their H.Q. We were invited to make up the party. I asked if it was formal and was told that I would need to tuck my shirt in for this one! The factory boss appeared in suit and tie and then it dawned on us that we were meeting the Prime Minister's wife. There was the usual waiting around when we arrived, but after a while our group was ushered into Mrs Hun Sen's office where she thanked Mr Lim for his continued support whilst video cameras whirred and flashguns popped. Tea was served and we had time for a sip before heading downstairs to the hall which had been set up for the donation photo-shoot. Sacks of rice and boxes of T-shirts adorned the stage and the donor's name was written large on the wall behind. Ming and I lingered on the edge of the group, hoping that we would be cropped out of the final pictures. The donation was made and a framed certificate presented, and suddenly it was all over - a quick handshake and outof the door.