Judiciary & Rule of Law
July 26, 2015 Five men and one woman from youth groups based in Preah Vihear and Phnom Penh were arrested this morning after gathering in front of the National Assembly to protest the Law on Associations and NGOs (LANGO), which was approved by the Senate on Friday.
The six youths - Chum Hour and Chum Hout from Khmer Youth Empire group, Veoun Ratana, Moung Sony and Soun Veana from Khmer Student Intelligent League Association, and Meas Leakhena from the CNRP Chroy Chanvar women’s movement - were among about 45 people from three youth groups affiliated to NGOs Moha Norkor and Mother Nature protesting LANGO outside the National Assembly this morning, some wearing prisoners’ outfits in protest of the repressive law. They are currently detained in Chamkor Mon district police office in Phnom Penh, where land communities and monks’ networks have joined their youth groups protesting outside for their release. About 120 mixed riot police, traffic police and security guards are also present.
July 21, 2015
This afternoon, 11 officials and supporters of the Cambodian National Rescue Party (CNRP) were convicted of charges relating to insurrection and sentenced to between seven and 20 years imprisonment. They were taken to CC1 prison immediately following the sentencing.
July 14, 2015
We, the undersigned civil society groups, condemn the Cambodian People’s Party’s unanimous approval yesterday of the repressive and unnecessary Law on Associations and Non-Government Organizations (LANGO) and call on the Senate to reject the law. The vote at yesterday’s extraordinary session of the National Assembly is a catastrophic development for civil society in Cambodia and is a major step in the government’s wider campaign to undermine democracy and restrict citizens’ rights and freedoms.
July 7, 2015
Amid mounting national and international criticism of the proposed Law on Associations and Non-Governmental Organizations (LANGO), the ruling party has expedited the schedule to pass LANGO into law by calling an extraordinary session of the National Assembly on Friday July 10th. Join LICADHO for live coverage of the main events in the last 72 hours before the vote.
July 4, 2015
The CPP, Cambodia’s ruling party, has announced its intention to hold an extraordinary session of the National Assembly on July 10th, during which members of parliament will vote on whether to pass the Law on Associations and NGOs (LANGO). For the past three months Cambodian civil society has been voicing its opposition to the law and between June 28 and 30, numerous grassroots groups, networks and NGOs conducted a spirited 3-day campaign to protest against the LANGO and also the draft Trade Union Law. Both laws have been widely criticised in Cambodia and abroad for the threat they represent to Cambodian civil society. This music video shows some of the campaign events at which activists and civil society members sang and danced to a classic Cambodian pop song “I Don’t Accept It”. The lyrics were specially rewritten by Cambodian youths and Boeung Kak activists to express their rejection of the laws and to assert their right to gather and express themselves freely.
July 2, 2015
From June 28-30, various sectors of Cambodian civil society conducted a spirited 3-day campaign to protest against two draft laws, the Law on Associations and NGOs (LANGO) and the Trade Union Law (TUL). On the third day, authorities used force to prevent hundreds of members of civil society from peacefully marching toward the National Assembly from four locations.
June 29, 2015
At 8 o’clock tomorrow morning, in protest against two draft laws, the Law on Associations and Non-Governmental Organisations (LANGO) and the Trade Union Law (TUL), hundreds of marchers will make their way towards the National Assembly from four locations in Phnom Penh. Both laws have been widely criticised in Cambodia and abroad for the threat they represent to Cambodian civil society. LICADHO will be livestreaming events from each of the marches throughout the morning.
June 25, 2015
After much public discussion, and following your article, “CPP Lawmakers Press Ahead with NGO Law” (Cambodia Daily dated 24 June, 2015), LICADHO wishes to address a general misunderstanding of the draft Law on Associations and Non-Governmental Organizations (LANGO).
LANGO is not a simply an “NGO law” impacting a few hundred NGOs. The law’s mandatory registration provisions apply to any group of people who join together to pursue any common cause, no matter their purpose or level of organization. Given the political context in Cambodia, we view this as a concerted effort to stop grassroots and community based organizations in their tracks. No registration, no community based organizations, no voices.
June 17, 2015
The draft Law on Associations and Non-Governmental Organizations (LANGO) obtained in June 2015 will establish mandatory registration for all domestic and international associations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), criminalizing all activities by unregistered membership organizations. The requirement to register appears all encompassing and could be interpreted to apply to all organizations from grassroots groups and community based organisations up to major international organizations. Mandatory registration could have a particularly severe impact on the freedom of association of grassroots groups and community based organizations.
This memo is a specific breakdown of the key provisions within the approved draft law that have worsened since the December 2011 draft, and the potential impacts on groups operating in Cambodia.
June 11, 2015
This audio book titled “Going Offline? The Threat to Cambodia’s Newfound Internet Freedoms” describes the vital importance of the Internet for freedom of expression in Cambodia and the imminent threat that this last bastion for independent voices now faces.
May 11, 2015
The Cambodian government must withdraw the proposed Law on Associations and Non-Governmental Organizations (LANGO) and make the legislative drafting process in the country transparent, FIDH and its member organizations, the Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association (ADHOC) and the Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights (LICADHO), said today.
March 2, 2015
Late last week a committee headed by the Ministry of Justice announced that 16 incarcerated women, including 15 women with children and one pregnant woman, will be released before International Women’s Day on March 8, 2015. The committee also stated that the government plans to release pregnant women and women with children every year.
February 26, 2015
We, the Electoral Reform Alliance (ERA) and Civil Society Organizations, condemn any political party which includes, or will include court officials and officers armed forces within political party’s ranks. This inclusion is a violation of the constitution, the rule of law, and the principle of democracy, in particular free and fair elections.
February 24, 2015
The trial of 11 Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) members and supporters was due to be held yesterday at 8 am at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court. Last Thursday, and at very short notice, lawyers for the 11 were informed that the hearing had been postponed. All have been charged with offences they are alleged to have committed during violence which took place at Freedom Park on July 15, 2014. This is the third time there has been a delay in hearing the criminal case against them. Five of the 11 - Meach Sovannara, Sum Puthy, Tep Narin, Ouk Pich Samnang, and Ke Khim - are among the group of ‘Free the 19’ detainees currently imprisoned in Prey Sar’s Correctional Center 1 and Correctional Center 2 .
January 26, 2015
We the undersigned civil society groups condemn the indefensible verdicts issued this morning by the Court of Appeal in the cases of ten land activists and one monk.