Cambodia agrees 'in principle' to Australian plan to resettle boatpeople

A senior Cambodian official says his country has tentatively agreed to accept asylum-seekers who had been seeking to settle in Australia.

Foreign Ministry Secretary of State Ouch Borith told reporters Tuesday there was an agreement in principle to take the asylum-seekers, who are being held in camps on the Pacific island nation of Nauru under an agreement with Australia. However, Cambodia had not yet approved the deal.

The boatpeople are mostly from South Asian countries and Myanmar.

Borith said Cambodia had established a committee to study the idea, which came at the initiative of Australia and whose details have not been made public.

There are more than 1,100 asylum seekers in Nauru. Human rights groups claim conditions at the Nauru camp are poor.