WomenAudio Book Break the Silence to End Impunity for Rape in the Cambodian Justice System
January 6, 2017
This audio book contains the edited highlights of two radio shows exploring how the Cambodian justice system responds to cases of rape. The shows were originally broadcast during the 2016 16 Days of Activism against Gender Based Violence Campaign. In the two clips, a young rape victim and the father of a rape victim describe their experiences of the Cambodian justice system and there is a discussion of the main findings of LICADHO’s most recent report on rape “Getting Away With It – 2016 Update” which reviews the outcomes of cases investigated by LICADHO in 2015.
November 28, 2016
A year ago, to mark the 2015 16 Days Against Gender Based Violence campaign, LICADHO published a report Getting Away With It: The Treatment of Rape in Cambodia’s Justice System. The report was based on cases investigated by LICADHO in 2012, 2013 and 2014 and found that there were grave and systemic flaws in how rape cases are prosecuted in Cambodia and as a result, a disturbingly low number of convictions. There were several reasons for this: the extensive use of financial compensation to settle cases, widespread corruption amongst the police and the judiciary, poor understanding and application of the law by judges, and the prevalence of discriminatory attitudes towards women.
March 8, 2016 This morning, police and para-police in Phnom Penh were mobilized to prevent a bicycle rally celebrating International Women’s Day, a national holiday in Cambodia.
Around 200 people including unions, garment factory workers, associations, NGOs and citizens' groups had gathered in front of the Ministry of Women’s Affairs to participate in a 9 km bicycle ride across Phnom Penh to the National Assembly. The rally was intended to celebrate economic, social and political achievements of women in the country but also call for further action by the government to eliminate disparity in the recognition and enforcement of women’s rights throughout the country.
However, as participants began to cycle away from the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, attempting to form a single file line, they were met nearly immediately by approximately 60 mixed security forces who blocked the road in both directions, creating a large traffic jam. The authorities’ purported reason for blocking the rally was to prevent traffic disruptions. Participants were surrounded by police and forced to remain outside the Ministry of Women’s Affairs for over three hours before they were finally allowed to leave.
March 7, 2016
Tomorrow is International Women’s Day. To mark the event LICADHO is releasing a new audio book and summary audio clip titled Getting Away With It: The Treatment of Rape in Cambodia’s Justice System. Both the book and the summary present evidence of the immense failure of the Cambodian justice system to properly investigate and prosecute cases of rape involving women and children. They provide details of multiple systemic flaws – corruption, discriminatory attitudes towards women and girls, misinterpretation of the law, and lack of resources – which, together, mean that many perpetrators of rape receive only very lenient punishment or go completely unpunished.
January 11, 2016
This audio book contains the edited highlights of a radio show that was originally broadcast during the 2015 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence campaign. The show, titled "Unite against Impunity for Rape in Cambodia" accompanied publication of the report "Getting Away With It: The Treatment of Rape in Cambodia's Justice System" and includes a discussion of the main findings and recommendations of the report as well as an interview with the father of a rape victim.
December 17, 2015
To celebrate International Human Rights Day (IHRD), about 10,000 people from rural and urban communities participated in 20 marches and events across the country from December 6 to December 10. These were organized by the informal network Friends of December 10th, which includes youth, land communities, associations, farmers, monks, and NGOs. On December 10, groups peacefully marched from various locations in Phnom Penh toward the Ministry of Justice to demand that the government resolve Cambodia’s land conflict epidemic; reform the judicial system and release human rights defenders and activists; raise the minimum wage and respect labour rights; end state-sponsored violence; and respect freedoms of expression, association and peaceful assembly. This year’s IHRD theme was ‘Justice’.
November 29, 2015
Today, to mark the global campaign 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, which began on November 25 and runs until December 10, LICADHO is publishing a new report Getting Away With It: The Treatment of Rape in Cambodia’s Justice System. The report presents evidence of the immense failure of the Cambodian justice system to properly investigate and prosecute cases of rape involving women and children. It provides details of multiple systemic flaws – corruption, discriminatory attitudes towards women and girls, misinterpretation of the law, and lack of resources – which, together, mean that many perpetrators of rape receive only very lenient punishment or go completely unpunished.
August 12, 2015
In response to the article "Provincial cop ‘still on job’ despite sentencing" (Phnom Penh Post, 11 August 2015), LICADHO commends Mr Yun Bunly for his remarkable courage and principle in pursuing the case against Korng Sophat, the police officer convicted of raping his 11-year old daughter in 2010. Immediately after committing the crime, Sophat offered Mr Bunly and his family a sizeable sum of money to drop the complaint against him. Instead the family chose to pursue the case through the courts but five years later they have been woefully failed by Cambodia’s justice system.
March 18, 2015
Following the recent release of 22 women from prison, LICADHO welcomes news that the Ministries of Justice and Interior will discuss longer term solutions to ensuring the welfare of children whose mothers face prison sentences.
LICADHO has recently conducted detailed research into the arrest and sentencing of mothers with dependent children and has found that the welfare of the child is rarely taken into account when a mother is sent to pre-trial detention or at sentencing. Many women interviewed told LICADHO that judges did not even ask them if they had children or not before sending them to prison.
March 13, 2015
To celebrate International Women’s Day 2015 LICADHO, together with the Highlanders Association of Cambodia, organised a forum in Ban Lung, Ratanakiri for people affected by land grabbing. The forum was attended by over 100 representatives from eight different indigenous communities from within Ratanakiri and by land rights activists from other provinces around the country. The theme of the forum was the effect of land conflicts on women and the majority of the participants were women. The participants shared their experiences and ideas and many performed songs they had written telling the stories of their land disputes. We profile six of the women who attended the forum. Their stories illustrate the many hardships faced by women affected by land disputes as well as their remarkable spirit and resilience.
March 5, 2015
It is with deep regret that LICADHO announces it will not conduct annual activities in Cambodian prisons this year for International Women’s Day, which will be celebrated on March 8.
For over 15 years LICADHO has visited Cambodian prisons on International Women’s Day (IWD) to provide care packages to female prisoners, female guards and to the children living in prison with their mothers. In the past 10 years, LICADHO has also coordinated special entertainment in prisons including speeches, games, traditional dancing and shows performed by the prisoners themselves. The activities have been well received by the prisoners and used to be supported by the prison authorities.
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 15, 2015
As of November 2014 there were 40 children between the ages of one month and almost four years living with their mothers in the Cambodian prisons monitored by LICADHO. Approximately half of them were born in prison and have never experienced life beyond the prison walls. Whilst there have been few detailed studies assessing the long-term impact of prison life on a child’s development, it is clear that for some children early life behind bars can have devastating physical and psychological consequences and life in Cambodian prisons is no exception.
January 28, 2015
Ly Seav Minh is 23 years old and lives with her mother, father and brother in Toul Kork district, Phnom Penh. The family has lived on the land for 35 years and despite possessing evidence of their lengthy occupation of the land, they have been involved in a long-running land dispute with the municipality and the Khun Sea Company, to which the municipality sold the land in 2010. Originally six other families were involved in the dispute but all have now accepted compensation payments and moved away after facing consistent intimidation from the company.
January 8, 2015
This Khmer audio book contains two radio shows that were originally broadcast during the 2014 campaign, 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence. The shows accompany the report "Good Wives": Women Land Campaigners and the Impact of Human Rights Activism, and include interviews with four female land activists who discuss how their lives have been changed by their activism and share their experiences of domestic violence and family breakdown.