Latest Flash News & Articles

Flash News: Five Lor Peang villagers provisionally released prior to trial
Published on August 29, 2014

Today at around 4pm, five Lor Peang community members who were arrested and detained in the last month have been provisionally released by the Investigating Judge of Kampong Chhnang Provincial Court. Three of the villagers were arrested during a 60km-long peaceful march from Kampong Chhnang province to Phnom Penh. The march was undertaken to call for a resolution to a long-standing land dispute between the villagers and K.D.C Company, while also calling for the release of two community members, arrested weeks earlier.

All five members have been released under judicial supervision with three conditions: 1. That they appear before the court when summonsed; 2. That they do not change residence without informing the court; and 3. That they present themselves to their local police station every month.

The release follows repeated attempts by the Lor Peang community to submit petitions to various government institutions over their conflict with K.D.C Company.

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Flash News: Four activists from Boeung Kak Lake Community arrested
Published on August 29, 2014

This morning at around 9.20am, four community activists from Boeung Kak Lake Community were arrested at Wat Chas, Chroy Chang Va district. The activists had arrived to support rural land communities from Pailin, Banteay Meanchey, Battambang and Svay Rieng, who were preparing a march to petition the National Assembly and Prime Minister Hun Sen this morning. The four activists arrested were Song Sreyleap, Tep Vanny, Kek Chanrasmey and Kong Chantha. They were detained at Chroy Chang Va district office before being released before noon, with one of the arrested requiring medical attention at Calmette Hospital. Following the arrests of the four activists, authorities locked the communities inside the grounds of Wat Chas.

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Flash News: Three land activists detained outside Council of Ministers
Published on August 22, 2014

This morning approximately 100 land activists from Borei Keila, Lor Peang and Boeung Kak Lake communities marched to the Council of Ministers to submit petitions for the resolution of their respective land disputes.

Their peaceful assembly was disrupted by riot police and 7 Makara district security guards, who temporarily detained three activists amid an unsuccessful push to disperse people.

This morning, Prime Minister Hun Sen plans to meet at the Council of Ministers with a number of top officials to discuss unresolved land disputes across the country.

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Flash News: Three CNRP youth leaders released on bail
Published on August 22, 2014

At 9.30am this morning, the three CNRP youth leaders arrested and imprisoned at CC1 on August 2 were released on bail for a total deposit amount of $1,000. Khin Chamreun, San Kimheng and Neang Sokhun will be granted provisional release under judicial supervision. Lawyers are processing court papers to release them this evening.

Chamreun was originally named in the court documents filed by case prosecutor Keo Socheat on July 16 in which he was formally accused, along with the other eight CNRP officials, of inciting and instigating violence, and leading an insurrectional movement. Kimheng and Sokhun are accused of acts of violence, obstructing public officials and taking part in an insurrectional movement.

An additional summons is still standing for five other CNRP members who are scheduled to appear for questioning before Phnom Penh Municipal Court in the coming weeks.

CPP and CNRP are set to vote on a re-sharing of key National Assembly positions and commissions on August 26, following the July 22 political settlement.

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Flash News: Three CNRP youths leaders denied bail by Phnom Penh Muncipal Court
Published on August 7, 2014

On the morning of August 7, 2014, Investigating Judge Keo Mony decided to refuse a bail request regarding the three CNRP Youth Leaders detained at CC1 in Prey Sar Prison.

The three CNRP youth leaders, Khin Chamreun, San Kimheng, Neang Sokhun were all arrested on Saturday August 2, 2014. Their arrests occurred while constitutional amendments were being debated upon by both parties, during which time the eight released CNRP officials, as well as CNRP Vice-President Kem Sokha, have been summonsed for further questioning on August 8-13.

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Flash News: Three CNRP youth members arrested in Phnom Penh today
Published on August 2, 2014

Shortly after noon today, police arrested two additional CNRP youth members in Phnom Penh: Tuol Kork district youth leader San Kimheng and Chbar Ampov district youth member Neang Sokhun. This follows the arrest of CNRP Phnom Penh youth leader Khin Chamreun earlier this morning. Chamreun was transferred from Phnom Penh Municipal Police Station to Phnom Penh Municipal Court before finally being detained at Prey Sar's CC1 prison at 12.10pm.

These arrests are taking place at a time of ongoing negotiation over constitutional amendments between the CPP and CNRP. The negotiations follow the parties’ agreement of July 22 which secured the release of eight CNRP activists who were detained at the time and aimed to bring to an end the year-long political deadlock between the parties.

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Flash News: Ninth CNRP official arrested amid negotiations over constitutional amendments
Published on August 2, 2014

At 7.30am this morning, Khin Chamreun the Chief of Phnom Penh CNRP Youths was arrested at a restaurant in Takhmao town, south of Phnom Penh, and transported to Phnom Penh Municipal Police Station. Chamreun was formally accused alongside the other eight CNRP officials who were detained for one week at CC1 and CC2 prisons over the violence at Freedom Park on July 15th.

The arrest of Chamreun comes at a sensitive time as the CNRP continue to negotiate over constitutional amendments with the CPP. Additionally, the other eight CNRP officials who were released as part of a political deal on July 22 are still facing charges. The eight officials have been summonsed along with CNRP Vice-President Kem Sokha by investigating judge Keo Mony, to appear for questioning at Phnom Penh Municipal Court in the coming weeks.

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Flash News: All eight members of CNRP released as political deadlock ends with a deal
Published on July 22, 2014

All eight members from the Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) were released today at around 4.45pm following their detainment at Prey Sar Prison (CC1 and CC2) over the violence that occurred at Freedom Park on July 15.

The provisional release comes shortly after the CNRP agreed to take up its seats in the National Assembly, following a summit meeting at the Senate between leading members of the CNRP and Cambodian People’s Party (CPP). Party officials met to discuss reforms regarding a National Electoral Commission (NEC), election dates, and National Assembly.

Around 350 supporters gathered at Prey Sar Prison as CNRP Members of Parliament-elect (MPs), Real Camerin, Keo Phirum, Nuth Rumduol, Long Ry, Mu Sochua, Men Sothavarin and Ho Vann were all released, along with CNRP grassroots activist Ouern Narith.

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Flash News: 2 more CNRP MPs join their imprisoned colleagues in Prey Sar
Published on July 18, 2014

This morning at 6.20am, Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) Members of Parliament-elect, Long Ry and Nut Romdoul were transported to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court where they were questioned briefly by Investigating Judge Keo Mony. Both MPs were arrested yesterday afternoon at Long Ry's home while they waited for their lawyer to arrive to sign documents. Following their questioning the judge ordered that the MPs be detained at Prey Sar Prison, where they will be interviewed further. Both CNRP MPs were transported to the prison this morning at around 9.30am. This brings to 8 the total of CNRP officials being held in pre-trial detention for offences relating to the violence which took place at Freedom Park on July 15.

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Flash News: Two more CNRP Members of Parliament-elect arrested
Published on July 17, 2014

This afternoon, Long Ry of Banteay Meanchey and Nuth Roumdoul of Kampong Speu, both Members of Parliament-elect were arrested. The case prosecutor formally accused them of charges relating to the Freedom Park violence that occurred on July 15. They are both being transported to Phnom Penh Police Station.

By now, a total of seven Members of Parliament-elect and one leading activist have been arrested and detained in the last 48 hours.

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Flash News: Kem Sokha, Deputy Leader of CNRP summonsed for questioning
Published on July 17, 2014

Deputy Leader of the Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) has today received a summons for questioning at 8am on July 25. This follows the arrest on July 15 and 16 of five CNRP MPs elect and one grassroots activist. All six were arrested in connection with the violence of July 15 in Freedom Park and charged under Cambodia’s Criminal Code articles 28 and 218 (instigating aggravated intentional violence), 495 (inciting others to commit a felony) and 459 (leading an insurrectional movement). The latter charge carries a sentence of up to 30 years’ imprisonment. All six are currently held in pre-trial detention at CC1 and CC2 prisons.

It appears that Kem Sokha is also wanted for questioning in connection with the July 15 violence. The summons states that he will be questioned in order to clarify his responsibilities as a CNRP leader.

Two additional CNRP MPs elect, Long Ry and Nuth Romdoul, and one other CNRP activist Khin Chamreun have been named in court documents as having been formally accused by the case prosecutor.

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Flash News: The Constitutional Council declares three laws on the judiciary compatible with the constitution.
Published on July 4, 2014

Today the Constitutional Council declared that three new laws on the judiciary, the Law on the Organization of the Courts, the Law on the Organization and Functioning of the Supreme Council of Magistracy, and the Statute of Judges and Prosecutors, are consistent with the Cambodian constitution and can therefore be promulgated, following approval by the King.

In a statement released last month, LICADHO urged the Constitutional Council to reject the laws as they are currently drafted on the grounds that they do not comply with the constitution: whilst the constitution protects the independence of the judiciary, the three laws will improperly legitimize and entrench government control over the courts and judges.

The laws were approved earlier this year by the National Assembly and the Senate. No public consultations were carried out on the draft laws and as a result of the almost year-long boycott of the National Assembly by opposition party members, they have been subjected to no proper legislative scrutiny.

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Flash News: UN Special Rapporteur Visits Victims of Land Grabbing in Koh Kong and Preah Sihanouk
Published on June 21, 2014

This morning, Surya P. Subedi, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of Human Rights in Cambodia, visited and held discussions with land grab victims in Chikhor Leu village, Sre Ambel District, Koh Kong province. The land overlapped with an economic land concession given over to the production of sugar which was linked to ruling-party senator Ly Yong Phat.

In the afternoon, Subedi also visited Spean Ches community, Village 6, in Preah Sihanouk province. Some residents of this community were among the over 100 families violently evicted on April 20, 2007 from a plot of land 500 meters away in Commune 4, Mittapheap District, Sihanoukville, by 150 armed forces including military. Subedi held discussions with community members before meeting with the provincial governor.

Subedi’s visit throws light on long-standing land grabbing cases that remain unresolved. In both cases, the state-involved land grabs happened over half a decade ago.

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Flash News: Freedom for activists and workers
Published on May 30, 2014

Today the ‘FreeThe23’ and ‘Stung Meanchey-two’ are finally free men.

The 22 who had remained in prison were released just after 11am today and marched back to Phnom Penh together with around 500 of their supporters. They will now be reunited with their families.

Those who had not been released on bail spent more than 140 days in detention in CC3 and CC1 prisons. Their highly contested trials took place at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court over five non-consecutive days in April and May.

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Flash News: FreeThe23 and Stung Meanchey verdicts: all convicted with sentences suspended
Published on May 30, 2014

This morning, the 25 arrested on January 2 and 3, and November 12, were convicted of a variety of charges with sentences of differing lengths but all sentences were suspended. Vorn Pao (President of Independent Democracy of Informal Economy Association) was sentenced to 4.5 years, Theng Savoeun (Coordinator of Coalition of Cambodian Farmer Community) 4 years, Chan Puthisak (community leader from Boeung Kak Lake) 4.5 years, and Sokun Sambath Piseth (staff member at Center for Labor Rights of Cambodia) 4.5 years. Lawyers are currently working to secure their release as soon as possible.

The trials at Phnom Penh Municipal Court started on April 25 and took place over five non-consecutive days with the case of the 10 men arrested at the Yak Jin factory finally coming to an end just after 8pm on May 22. On all the trial days supporters of the 25 were prevented from gathering in front of the court by roadblocks and a heavy police presence.

The 25 were all arrested during violent suppression of worker protests by the authorities. As of today, no member of the police or armed forces has been prosecuted for the use of live ammunition against unarmed civilians, which resulted in at least four deaths and the hospitalization of 38 on January 2-3 2014, and one death and the hospitalization of 9 on November 12, 2013.

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