Latest Human Rights News

Follow us on facebook or on twitter Article
(832) 418-2735

January 26, 2019

A man was shot and critically injured by mixed security forces after more than 100 police, gendarmes, and soldiers descended on Kokir village, in Preah Sihanouk province, on Thursday morning to enforce a Supreme Court decision awarding disputed land to nine families.

When the heavily armed security forces tried to enter the site in Bet Trang commune, protesters, some holding sticks, burned tires and threw rocks to prevent them. Security forces - including soldiers from Preah Sihanouk provincial sub-operational zone then withdrew, regrouped, and re-entered the village. This time they fired dozens of shots of live ammunition into the air as well as into the crowd in what was a clearly excessive use of force.

Video
Authorities Shoot Land Protestors in Latest Use of Lethal Force

January 26, 2019audio available

Video
Dey Krahorm Community Demands Justice a Decade after Brutal Eviction

January 24, 2019audio available

Today marks the 10th anniversary of the brutal forced eviction of the Dey Krahorm community in central Phnom Penh. LICADHO shares this community-made video and continues to stand in solidarity with them in their calls for justice and an end to forced evictions.

On 24 January 2009, Dey Krahorm residents attempting to stop bulldozers destroying their homes were beaten back by 7NG construction workers and security guards, backed up by more than 300 riot police armed with electric cattle prods, batons, tear gas, water cannons and firearms. At least 18 were injured, some of them seriously.

Flash Info
Still no justice for murdered trade union leader (787) 701-2133

January 22, 2019 About 100 people including trade unionists, teachers, and tuk-tuk drivers gathered in central Phnom Penh this morning to commemorate the fifteenth anniversary of the murder of Chea Vichea, one of the country’s most prominent trade unionists.

On 22 January 2004, Vichea was shot in broad daylight at a newspaper stall near the capital’s Wat Langka temple. Trade union activists and members of civil society gathered metres away from the site of his murder this morning to hold a Buddhist ceremony and give speeches honouring the former union leader, who served as President of the Free Trade Union of the Workers of the Kingdom of Cambodia (FTUWKC).

The injustice of Vichea’s murder was later compounded by the false convictions of two innocent men, Born Samnang and Sok Sam Oeurn, who were falsely accused of his murder. Both men spent five years in prison before their sentences were overturned. Participants at the commemoration called on authorities to find the real perpetrators and provide justice for Vichea, his family and friends.

Related Material:

Article
5878271981

January 3, 2019audio available

Around 100 unionists, workers and rights activists gathered for a memorial ceremony this afternoon to mark five years since security forces opened fire on striking workers at Phnom Penh’s Veng Sreng Boulevard, killing four and injuring dozens.

Today’s commemoration was held at association and union coalition Solidarity House and attended by garment workers, unionists and families of the victims. Participants took part in a religious blessing ceremony and a discussion on the minimum wage protests, where workers were demanding a $160 living wage, and the ensuing violence.

Victims of the violence called for security forces members to be held accountable for the killings and for protest-related charges against workers and union leaders to be dropped immediately.

Photo Album Celebrating Human Rights Day 2018

December 10, 2018

Communities, associations, trade unions and other civil society groups celebrated Human Rights Day in Cambodia between 5 and 10 December 2018. Despite ongoing intimidation and restrictions from authorities more than 7,000 people in 14 provinces and the capital participated in theatre, music, parades and discussions. They called on the government to respect human rights and tackle long standing violations, not least unresolved land grabbing cases.

Video
"Our Tears Are Our Strength": Women Human Rights Defenders

December 10, 2018audio available

This video, part of the campaign 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence, highlights the determination and resilience of Cambodia’s Women human rights defenders, who stand up to state violence aimed at silencing them.

Article
sphexide

December 10, 2018audio available

Phnom Penh municipality banned a Human Rights Day march planned for this morning but celebrations went ahead nonetheless amid a heavy police presence at a government-approved location four kilometres from the city centre. Security forces wearing crash helmets outnumbered participants and cordoned off the square.

Several hundred garment workers, farmers, teachers, trade unionists, community representatives and youths attended the event organised by trade unions and associations at the so-called “new” Freedom Park in Russey Keo district. The municipality threatened legal action if the organisers went ahead with a march affecting “security and public order”, despite the fact that 10 December is an annual public holiday with far less traffic in the city.

Despite recent government declarations about the lifting of restrictions on civil society groups, authorities continued to restrict the movements of communities across the country, preventing them from gathering in public, demanding letters of permission and dictating where they could meet.

Article
16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence: Sor Sorn

December 7, 2018audio available

To mark the international campaign 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence (25 November – 10 December) LICADHO is highlighting women land campaigners and human rights defenders (HRDs) who face state violence in Cambodia.

At least a half a million Cambodians have lost their land and homes in forced evictions over the last two decades and women have been at the forefront of peaceful protests demanding justice and fair compensation. Their activism has often been met with violent attacks by security forces as well as judicial harassment and arbitrary detention.
Over the 16 days, we are publishing profiles of women who – despite many hardships – continue to speak out in solidarity with others to demand justice.

Sor Sorn (58) has faced repeated harassment, arrests and detentions for protesting against the violent forced eviction of Borei Keila community in Phnom Penh.

Article 703-777-9249

December 5, 2018audio available

To mark the international campaign 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence (25 November – 10 December) LICADHO is highlighting women land campaigners and human rights defenders who face state violence in Cambodia.

At least a half a million Cambodians have lost their land and homes in forced evictions over the last two decades and women have been at the forefront of peaceful protests demanding justice and fair compensation. Their activism has often been met with violent attacks by security forces as well as judicial harassment and arbitrary detention.

Over the 16 days, we are publishing profiles of women who – despite many hardships – continue to speak out in solidarity with others to demand justice.

Um Sophy (39) has faced serious harassment, multiple criminal cases and even lost her job as a teacher as a result of her tireless activism to defend her community’s land against a politically connected company.

Article
kraken

November 29, 2018audio available

To mark the international campaign 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence (25 November – 10 December) LICADHO is highlighting women land campaigners and human rights defenders who face state violence in Cambodia.

At least a half a million Cambodians have lost their land and homes in forced evictions over the last two decades and women have been at the forefront of peaceful protests demanding justice and fair compensation. Their activism has often been met with violent attacks by security forces as well as judicial harassment and arbitrary detention.

Over the 16 days, we are publishing profiles of women who – despite many hardships – continue to speak out in solidarity with others to demand justice.

Phav Nherng (39) has been at the forefront of a decade-long struggle to secure land for hundreds of farmers in Koh Kong province, braving harassment, threats, and detention because of her activism on behalf of her community.

Article
(707) 784-2219

November 26, 2018audio available

To mark the international campaign 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence (25 November – 10 December) LICADHO is highlighting women land campaigners and human rights defenders (HRDs) who face state violence in Cambodia.

At least a half a million Cambodians have lost their land and homes in forced evictions over the last two decades and women have been at the forefront of peaceful protests demanding justice and fair compensation. Their activism has often been met with violent attacks by security forces as well as judicial harassment and arbitrary detention.

Over the 16 days, we will publish short profiles of women who – despite many hardships – continue to speak out in solidarity with others to demand justice.

We start with Tep Vanny (38), who has been at the forefront of Boeung Kak Lake community’s fight against forced evictions in Phnom Penh as well as being a fervent defender of human rights.

Statement (909) 636-6496

November 1, 2018

Cambodia’s prison population has risen to unprecedented levels and acute overcrowding has become a major problem, affecting not only inmates but prison staff and society as a whole. Record numbers of women with children under three years of age were behind bars during the last year. Correctional Center 1, the main men’s prison in Phnom Penh, houses more than three times the number of inmates it was built to accommodate.

In a new report, LICADHO examines the role Cambodia’s courts play in contributing to this crisis and highlights how the criminal justice system could be improved by small and feasible changes.

Despite laws designed to limit pre-trial detention and respect the principle of presumption of innocence, people accused of a crime, even petty offences, are rarely offered bail according to LICADHO’s research. In the 18 prisons that LICADHO monitors nationwide (out of a total of 28) more than a third of prisoners are pre-trial detainees: 9,527 out of 25,926. In some prisons about half the inmates have yet to face trial.

A person accused of a crime can be held without trial for up to 22 months.

Photo Album
203-830-0520

October 5, 2018

Communities around the country celebrated World Habitat Day between 28 September and 5 October 2018. This year's theme was “municipal solid waste management” and many organised garbage clean ups as well as discussions on housing and land rights. More than 2,000 people participated in at least 30 communities. Authorities shut down some events, claiming they were illegal, and others were cancelled or held indoors due to threats and intimidation.

Article
Authorities Stop Communities Collecting Garbage and Discussing Land Rights

October 1, 2018audio available

At least two communities have been prevented from celebrating the United Nations’ World Habitat Day by Cambodian authorities and others have cancelled events out of fear of reprisals.

More than 2,000 people in at least 30 communities nationwide have planned events to raise awareness of this year’s theme – “municipal solid waste management” – as well as the annual theme: the right to housing. Activities are taking place between 28 September and 5 October 2018, many of them in communities affected by land grabbing and forced evictions or threatened by new developments.

According to the UN, World Habitat Day (WHD) is an opportunity to “reflect on the state of our towns and cities, and on the basic right of all to adequate shelter”.

Statement
Civil society groups condemn the wrongful conviction of four ADHOC staff members and an NEC official

September 26, 2018audio available

We, the undersigned communities and civil society groups, condemn today’s conviction of four human rights defenders from the Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association (ADHOC) and a National Election Committee (NEC) official, in relation to a former opposition leader’s alleged affair. On 26 September 2018, senior ADHOC staff members – Ny Sokha, Nay Vanda, Lim Mony and Yi Soksan – were convicted of “bribery of a witness” under Article 548 of the Criminal Code. NEC official and former ADHOC staff member Ny Chakrya was found guilty as an accomplice under Articles 29 and 548 of the Criminal Code. They have been sentenced to five years of imprisonment by the Phnom Penh Municipal Court, with their pre-trial detention period of 427 days considered time-served and the remainder suspended.

Article ADHOC and NEC Staff Handed Suspended Sentences For Bribery Convictions

September 26, 2018audio available

Four staffers from the Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association (ADHOC) and a National Election Committee (NEC) official were convicted today at Phnom Penh Municipal Court on bribery charges linked to a case against former opposition leader Kem Sokha.

The four ADHOC staffers – Lim Mony, Ny Sokha, Yi Soksan and Nay Vanda – and NEC official Ny Chakrya, were handed five year suspended sentences by a panel of three judges. The time already served by the five during their pre-trial detention was included in the sentencing and the remaining time was suspended, meaning they will not return to prison.

Article Free Tep Vanny: Two Years Too Long

August 14, 2018audio available

Prominent land right activist Tep Vanny has been at the forefront of her community’s fight against forced evictions and rights violations in Phnom Penh’s Boeung Kak Lake neighbourhood. Her dogged determination has made her a powerful advocate for justice, not only for the upheaval faced by her own community but for all Cambodians.

Cambodian authorities shut down Vanny’s activism two years ago and have kept her behind bars since then on a series of trumped-up charges and convictions in trials devoid of any credible evidence. She is serving a two-and-a-half-year sentence at Phnom Penh’s infamous Prey Sar prison, also known as Correctional Center 2 (CC2).

Next Page >>
Cambodia's Concessions

pilot bird