Archive for July, 2008

Wednesday, 30.7.2008: Rate of Cigarette Smokers in Rural Areas Is Higher than in Cities

Posted on 31 July 2008. Filed under: Week 571 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 571

“Phnom Penh: The World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control has become the first health treaty; it entered into force on 27 February 2005. To support this treaty, the Royal Government of Cambodia ratified it on 15 November 2005.

“According to a summary report for Cambodia about the use and the monitoring of tobacco, the percentage of smokers and the tendency to smoke cigarettes among men and women, at the age of 20: 53.9% of the men, and 6% of the women are smoking, while in general, more people in rural areas are smoking cigarettes than in cities.

“The same report continued to say that men at and over 40 smoke a lot of cigarettes; the age bracket of women with a high rate of smoking cigarettes is from 40 to 49. People start to smoke on the average from the age of 20. For tobacco a smoker spends approximately US$35.80 per year, and the annual expense of a family with cigarettes smokers is US$69.44 in Cambodia.

“A family in Phnom Penh, smoking cigarettes, spends 2.5% of their income, while in rural areas, a family spends 2.9%. In a family, one smoker spends about US$3 per month on average to buy cigarettes, and smokers smoke many cigarettes, starting from five minutes after getting up in the morning.

“Mr. Mom Kong, director of the Movement for Health in Cambodia, said that tobacco is an industrial crop which is planted in some provinces, such as Kompong Cham, Kandal, Prey Veng, and Kratie. About 90% of all tobacco plantations are in Kompong Cham. About 17,000 hectares are planted with tobacco, to produce cigarettes and for other uses, such as for [hand] turned cigarettes, and tobacco to be smoked in pipes.

“Mr. Mom Kong added that there are more than 200 types of cigarettes, including local cigarettes and cigarettes imported from foreign countries, which are sold on the markets. There are different types of cigarettes, from France, China, Japan, England, the United Sates of America, Singapore, Thailand, and Indonesia. He continued that [hand] turned cigarettes are used most, by 29% of the smokers, following by Khmer cigarettes at 24%, and then Parrot Cigarettes at 14%. Parrot Cigarettes is the most popular cigarette brand in the cities. Smokers in rural areas smoke local cigarettes, because their income is lower and cigarettes from foreign countries are expensive.

“Mr. Mom Kong mentioned that to be successful in controlling the use of tobacco, the Royal Government should draft anti-tobacco laws soon. These laws should be in accordance with the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, and should have clear regulations to prohibit the tobacco industry not to interfere with this policy, recognizing the strategic role of advertisements for marketing, and of the promotional efforts by the tobacco industry, aiming to promote addiction to nicotine. To counter the marketing strategies of the tobacco industry, presenting advertisements to all citizens, the Royal Government should introduce a total ban on tobacco advertising immediately, as well as stop sponsorships by the tobacco industry to protect the citizens, especially the youth.” Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1706, 30.7.2008

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1706, 30.7.2008

  • Rate of Cigarette Smokers in Rural Areas Is Higher than in the City
  • Cambodian Troops Will Withdraw Any Time, but Wait for the Thai Side First [said Prime Minister Hun Sen on 29 July 2008 at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as the Thai troops move according to decisions by the Thai cabinet – so the Cambodian side will wait for a Thai cabinet decision before moving]
  • A Newspaper Seller Was Arrested on Accusation of Distributing Leaflets for a Demonstration [Tuol Kork]
  • Funcinpec Asserted that It Will Continue to Cooperate with the Cambodian People’s Party [according to a letter from Princess Norodom Arunrasmei, who was the Funcinpec prime ministerial candidate; she is the wife of the Funcinpec president Mr. Keo Puth Rasmey, and a daughter of the Father King]
  • According to a Report in Phnom Penh, 37 People Died through Traffic Accidents, and More than 100 People Were Injured in the Previous Month [from 20 June 2008 to 20 July 2008]!

Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #60, 30.7.2008

  • The Election Results Are Received with 95% Confidence, and with 5% Bias
  • More than 70 Big and Many Small Boats Are Fishing Illegally [during the prohibited season, in the Siem Reap region]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6410, 30.7.2008

  • More Than 300 Siamese [Thai] Farmers Protested Near the Ou Rumduol Border Crossing [Battambang] against Siamese Merchants Who Buy Khmer Corn [29 July 2008]


Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3525, 30.7.2008

  • Sam Rainsy Party Parliamentarians Sue the National Election Committee at the Constitution Council for Abusing the Rights of Voters [the accusations are: 1. Some Voters had their names and enough documents, but were not allowed to vote because other voters voted for them already; 2. Citizen who registered and who had voter information cards, but their names were not on the lists; 3. The names of citizens who had voted in 2007 and had checked their names correctly on the lists before the election were not on the list on the election day. 4. Citizens whose names were on the list and who followed the instruction of the National Election Committee, taking their family books to vote, were denied to vote by officials of the polling stations who allowed only the head of a family, whose photo was in the family book, to vote (this is a mistake created by an unclear NEC instruction [as not all pictures of all family members are in the family book]). 5. Some of the citizens’ names were eliminated without reason, and 6. The provision of Form 1018 to those who did not have names in the lists was done even on election day on election day]


Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4654, 30.7.2008

  • Mr. Sam Rainsy Gathers Those Who Could Not Vote to Now Protest, but Not to March [on 30 July 2008]
    Head of the European Community Observers [Mr. Martin Callanan]: There Is No Serious Irregularity Affecting the Election Results
  • Cambodian and Thai Prime Ministers Are Satisfied with the Results of the Meeting in Siem Reap [which was held on 28 July 2008]
  • As Soon as the Election Results Were Released, the Government Declared to Increase the Allowance [of Riel 20,000 = approx. US$5] for Civil Servants Immediately [according to an announcement by the Ministry of Economy and Finance on 29 July 2008]
  • [About 30] Khmer Students in the Philippines Held a Non-Violent Demonstration [in front of the Thai Embassy] against the Presence of Thai Troops in the Preah Vihear Region [28 July 2008]

Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3372, 30.7.2008

  • Funcinpec Rejected to Join [with the Sam Rainsy Party, the Human Rights Party, and the Norodom Ranariddh Party] against the Election Results

Click here to have a look at the last Mirror editorial – where we provided detailed information about the 2003 election results, to compare them with the election results of 2008, as they become available.

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Tuesday, 29.7.2008: National Election Committee Announced that the Election Was Fair, but Civil Society Organizations and Party Representatives Claim It Was Not

Posted on 30 July 2008. Filed under: Week 571 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 571

“The fourth term election day passed, but what is left are irregularities during the election day, leading to the accusation that the election was not fair. As for the National Election Committee [NEC], it announced that the election proceeded freely and fairly, and that there were no significant problems disturbing the election.

“Mr. Mao Sophearith, a member of the NEC, made some general announcements about the election day in a press conference in the afternoon of 27 July 2008, one hour after the election stations had closed, that all election stations had been operational, although it was raining and windy in Koh Kong and in Sihanoukville. There were problems with some ballots, because one election office had dropped the ballots into water in Prey Veng, and the ballots of two election stations in Poipet were not usable, but they were substituted in time. As for security, there was no problem.

“Mr. Mao Sophearith added that there were some irregularities, such as the irregular issuing of Forms 1018, and names missing from voter lists, but these problems happened only in Phnom Penh, there were no such problems in other provinces, he said.

“When asked about the problem that some parties had raised, that for this election tens of thousands of voters had been omitted from the voter lists, Mr. Tep Nitha, the secretary-general of the NEC, responded that during the elimination campaign in 2006, the NEC had eliminated 585,723 names countrywide, and the NEC had announced the elimination of names to clean the list publicly and broadly, and there were monitors from the political parties and from civil society organizations involved.

“Many people said about these irregularities in the election, that they had registered very correctly, some asserted that they had voted two or three times in past elections, but now their names were not found in the voter lists, though they had not changed their place of residence; but the names of some others who had died already, were still on the voter lists.

“A person in Boeng Tumpun said that only one of the four members of their family was on the voter list – the names of the other three could not be found. An old woman said that she had voted during former elections already three times, and she had never changed her residence to any other place, but in this term, she could not find her name; then, she had to go back home with disappointment.

“A man rode on a motorbike to many election offices, but he could not find his name. He just could not believe this, so he decided to ride on his motorbike back to his home, and then returned on foot to many election offices to find his name, but he still could not find it. He said he regretted it very much that he could not vote because his name could not be found. He still cannot imagine how his name can be missing, because he has already voted there times in past elections, and he even had checked and had found his name clearly on the list before the election day.

“Different sources reported that in addition to the aforementioned people, many other people raised similar questions, and some people walked repeatedly to the election stations to find their names, because they could not believing that their names were lost.

“Unofficial sources reported that alone in Chak Angrae Kraom, in Boeng Tumpun, and in Stung Meanchey, tens of thousands of names were missing on the lists.

“Ms. Pong Chiv Kek [Dr. Kek Galabru], the director of LICADHO, said that if it is true that many names were missing, the election was not fair.

“Mr. Thun Saray, the president of the Committee for Free and Fair Elections’ Board of Directors [COMFREL], mentioned in a press conference at about 7:00 p.m. of 27 July 2008 that names were missing mainly in Phnom Penh. ‘Therefore, we have not estimated the definite number of voters who could not vote.’ However, Mr. Thun Saray stressed that during the elimination of names to clean the voters’ lists, COMFREL had already voiced their concern, because COMFREL had found that approximately 50,000 to 60,000 people’s names had been omitted incorrectly.

“An announcement about preliminary results showed the following:

“On the election day of 27 July 2008, there were serious problems because many voters could not find their election stations, or their names on the lists. Such cases happened in almost all provinces and cities. These irregularities will affect the results of the election, as many people could not vote; though there are many people who could vote, but there are problems as a result of the elimination of voters from the lists, and of the relocation of election stations in some big provinces and cities, such as in Phnom Penh, Banteay Meanchey, and Kompong Cham, especially in the following areas of Phnom Penh: in Tonle Basak [Dey Krahom and ‘Building Block’ communities, where there had been evictions and relocations], and in Boeng Tumpun.

“Mr. Thun Saray, the president of the board of COMFREL and the director of ADHOC, said, ‘Voters’ lists problems, that many names of voters were missing, that voters did not have information about voting stations (they had not receive the voters’ information papers), misunderstanding among voters about the purpose of voters’ information papers, or they had not received information papers, was the result of technical procedures as well as of political reasons. Mr. Thun Saray added, ‘There is strong disappointment about the voters’ lists problems, with the missing voters’ names, and with voters who did not get get the voters’ information papers; all this led to the decline in the number of voters [to only about 70% of the registered voters, less than during the election in 2003].’

“Mr. Kumaoka Michiya [熊岡路矢], co-chairperson of the People’s Forum on Cambodia Japan [PEFOCJ – active since 1993 – more information is here – カンボジア市民フォーラム – only in Japanese], said that he ‘was disappointed that the voter listing systems was still not reformed.’

“Civil servants and representatives of the local authorities were often present at election stations like in previous years, affecting the decisions of citizens to choose their parliamentarians.

“The issues related to Form 1018, to be provided as identification to voters, still continued into the election day, like in Mondolkiri, although the instruction by the NEC allowed only to issue this form not later than 5:30 p.m. of Saturday, 26 July 2008.

“COMFREL would like to highly appreciate the work of the NEC and of the Armed Forces regarding the election – they worked hard on the election day to process everything peacefully, they prevented the sale of alcohol on the White Day (26 July 2008), and they intervened effectively to prevent the rising of the price of transportation by taxis (to ease the financial burden of citizens traveling to their home towns and villages to vote).

“However, some parties provided transportation to voters, workers from Phnom Penh, to go to other provinces on the White Day, and to cities such as Svay Rieng and Kompong Cham. Political parties also distributed presents to voters in Champei village, Angkor Chey commune of Kampot, and in Kompong Rou and Kompong Trabaek districts in Prey Veng.

“Also, the Armed Forces were sent by the Ministry of Information to stop the broadcasts of Radio Moha Nokor, FM 93.5 MHz, at night (at around 11:00 p.m. of 26 July 2008), without any related documentation from this ministry until the morning of 27 July 2008, when the Ministry of Information announced to revoke the license of this radio station, stating as the reason that this radio station had disregarded the instruction of the Ministry of Information, and the guiding principles of the NEC, which had asked the Ministry of Information to intervene. Mr. Kol Panha [the director of COMFREL] said, ‘The implementation of legislation to punish any media who violate the laws, the procedures, and the guiding principles of the NEC was not handled fairly, according to the law.’

“COMFREL primarily has found some irregularities such as the following:

White Day [26 July 2008]

  • An activist of the Cambodian People’s Party was murdered in Siem Reap.
  • A political party activist was intimidated in Kampot.
  • There were four cases of distributions of presents in Champei commune, Angkor Chey district, Kampot, and in Svay Rieng.

  • Election and Ballot Counting Day [27 July 2008]

  • A Human Rights Party activist was murdered in Kandal.

  • Violation of Procedures

  • Local authorities, village chiefs, and commune chiefs, were present near election stations to observe voters, making them afraid; this happened in almost all election stations in Labansiek of Ratanakiri, Kratie, Phnom Penh, Prey Veng, Kompong Speu, Kompong Chhnang, Pursat, and Svay Rieng.
  • Voters’ names were missing (the voters came to the election stations, but they could not find their names) in Boeng Tumpun for more than 30% of the voters (of a total of about 10,000 voters), about 50% in the Tonle Basak district and the Dey Krahom community, about 20% to 30% in the Stung Meanchey School [the schools serving as election stations], and in the Chak Angrae Kraom School of Chak Angrae Kraom district, Boeng Reang district, Boeng Trabaek School, Tuek L’ak, Kouk commune, Dambae of Kompong Cham, Traeng Trayueng commune, Phnom Sruoch of Kompong Speu, Daem Mien commune, Takhmao of Kandal, Ou Ambel commune, Serei Saophoan of Banteay Meanchey (Prohuot Primary School), Kompong Chhnang, Pailin, Oddar Meanchey, Kandal, and Battambang.

  • There were cases that local authorities and village and commune chiefs continued to create Form 1018 identification documents on the election day in Labansiek, commune and district of Ratanakiri, Prek Pnov commune, Ponhea Lueu district of Kompong Cham, Sihanoukville, Kompong Speu, Kompong Chhnang, Pursat, and Phnom Penh.
  • There were at least 12 cases of vote buying by giving money to voters, or promising to give money to some if they do not go to vote, which happened in Khvav commune, Traeng district of Takeo, Kompong Thom, Stung Treng, Kompong Rou commune of Prey Veng, Kompong Chhnang, and Svay Rieng.
  • There were at least two cases where cars with sign of the Cambodian People’s Party were driving up and down repeatedly in front of election stations in Pailin and in Kandal.
  • There were cases where political parties transported citizens to vote in Sampov Lun commune and district of Battambang (Office Number 0722), Labansiek of Ratanakiri, Svay Rieng, and Oddar Meanchey.
  • There were cases that the manager of a restaurant and hotel in Phnom Penh prohibited about 60% of 40 employees to vote.
  • There are five cases known where voters voted instead of another person, in Sralau commune, Malai district of Banteay Meanchey, Phsar Daeum Thkov, Kompong Cham, and Svay Rieng.
  • There were cases that thousands of voters as groups wore campaign T-shirts in Takeo.
  • There were four cases where voters wore police and soldier’s uniforms into the election station at the Department of Culture of Ratanakiri, in Takeo, and in Phnom Penh.
  • There was a case that a person went to the secret voting booth to talk to a voter.
  • There is one case of taking back a voters list from observers in Takeo.
  • There was one case that an office was closed during lunchtime in Russey Keo district.
  • There were 10 cases where voters could vote because they had just the voter information papers and their party member identification.
  • There was one case where one person was able to vote twice in Phnom Penh.
  • There was the case that observers were not allowed to go into the Chroy Ambel election station in Chambak, Kratie.”
  • Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3371, 29.7.2008

    Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
    Tuesday, 29 July 2008


    Chakraval, Vol.16, #2797, 29.7.2008

    • Results by the Morning of 28 July 208: Cambodian People’s Party Won 90 Seats, Sam Rainsy Party Won 26 Seats, Human Rights Party Won 3 Seats, Funcinpec Won 2 Seats, and Norodom Ranariddh Party Won 2 Seats


    Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1705, 29.7.2008

    • Twelve Hours of Cambodia-Thailand Talks Led to Agreement that Both Sides Will Withdraw Their Troops [before dealing with other problems – 28 July 2008 – Siem Reap – but no timing set for the withdrawal]
    • Seven Shiites Who Marched in a Pilgrimage in Iraq Were Shot Dead [by anonymous gunmen]


    Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #209, 29.7.2008

    • Samdech Euv Norodom Sihanouk Is Concerned that Siam [Thailand] Swallows Koh Kong of Cambodia [through investments by Thai former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra]
    • Four Parties Wining Seats [Sam Rainsy Party, Human Rights Party, Norodom Ranariddh Party, and Funcinpec] Rejected the Bad Election Proceedings on 27 July 2008 [through a joint statement on 28 July 2008]


    Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6409, 29.7.2008

    • Phnom Penh Authorities Warned [opposition party president] Mr. Sam Rainsy Not to March in Protest [against the results of the election]; They Said, ‘They Should Not Cause Turmoil while Thailand Is Invading our Border’
    • Poipet Border Crossing Is Quiet after Invasion by Thailand at the Preah Vihear Temple Region; More Illegal Khmer Laborers Are Sent Back by Thailand
    • Two Cars Plunged into the Water [into a canal in Kandal and a river in Kompong Cham] Killing Four People at Two Different Places
    • Nepal Police Arrested 125 Tibetan Demonstrators [at the Chinese Consulate in Kathmandu]


    Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3524, 29.7.2008

    • Mr. Sam Rainsy Calls International Observers Not to Recognize Election Results [claiming that in Phnom Penh, about 200,000 voters lost their right to vote]


    Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4653, 29.7.2008

    • Japan Welcomes the Election in Cambodia to Have Been Held in the Best Atmosphere [according to a statement on 28 July 2008 by the Japanese Observer Team with 23 observers]
    • President of OPEC [Chakib Khelil]: Oil Price Could Drop to US$70 [per barrel if US dollar were strong and the nuclear crisis related to Iran gets solved]
    • 70 Rebels in Afghanistan [near Pakistan border] Were Killed [in an attack by Afghanistan in corporation with NATO troops]


    Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3371, 29.7.2008

    • National Election Committee Announced that the Election Was Fair, but Civil Society Organizations and Party Representatives Claim It Was Not
    • National Television of Cambodia [TVK] Showed Only Leaders of the Cambodian People’s Party during the Election Campaign

    Click here to have a look at the last Mirror editorial – where we provided detailed information about the 2003 election results, to compare them with the election results of 2008, as they become available.

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    Monday, 28.7.2008: Military Police Protecting Illegally Cut Wood Calls a Journalist into Their Fortress and Hit Him as a Warning

    Posted on 29 July 2008. Filed under: Week 571 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 571

    “Sihanoukville: A journalist was slapped in Stung Hav, Sihanoukville, by a military police officer who protects illegally cut wood in their fortress, and he warned the journalist not to use his camera, because he had already published a report clearly mentioning their names, together with their previous and current scandals, relating to colluding to protect illegally cut wood.

    “The military police hit the journalist at 1:30 p.m. on 25 July 2008 at the Stung Hav administration post of Sihanoukville.

    “It was reported that the victim, the journalist who was caught and hit by a military military police officer in their fortress, is Mr. Ruos Phina, aged 39; the offender is Mr. Nget Vutha, called Kim, a military police officer with the rank of captain of Stung Hav, Sihanoukville, and he is a former soldier who had just been included into the military police some months ago.

    “Mr. Ruos Phina, the victim, reported to Kampuchea Thmey that on that day, he and another person, Vin Suon, also a reporter in Sihanoukville, were called by the military police official Nget Vutha into the Stung Hav administration post, to tell them to write a more positive report about their scandal, regarding the protection of illegally cut wood, because he had written already in a newspaper before. Mr. Ruos Phina agreed to meet them, and he went with another person, Vin Suon.

    “Mr. Ruos Phina continued that after he arrived in the Stung Hav military police administration office, Nget Vutha immediately, without saying a word, hit him strongly in the face, knocking him down to the ground, where he was with serious pain. He hit him in front of many other military police, but they did not help to intervene, and let the offender Nget Vutha hit and insult him strongly in front of all of them.

    “This shows clearly that violence was used to intimidate him, which seriously abuses his rights as a journalist, so he cannot stay still; he has to lodge a complaint to the law enforcement institutions so that they help to find justice for him. Especially, he will lodge a complaint to the commander of the Sihanoukville military police, Mr. Heang Rin, in order that he takes actions to solve the problem according to the law; and he hopes that Mr. Heang Rin will deal with this case fairly and not by being partisan, and if he does not solve it fairly for him, the journalist will not end it at this time.

    “Regarding the bad activities mentioned above, citizens in Sihanoukville, who knew what had happened, criticized also that normally military police, who should enforce and uphold the law, collude with each other to protect illegally cut wood. Moreover, they even dared to distort the truth by calling the journalist in, to hit him at their fortress. Committing such evil activities, how can they uphold and implement the law and be respected by the people?

    “The criticism continues to say that journalists are neutral publishers of information and are not partisan; if they see good activities, they write good things, and if they see evil activities, they write openly about these bad things, in order to contribute to develop society, to eliminate corruption and crimes which destroy society. Journalists are those who publicly criticize what is wrong to correct it, and to change from wrong to right. If members of the military police, like Mr. Nget Vutha, thinks that what a journalist had published is not true, he should clarify it, but he must not use violence by hitting and insulting the journalist, because this is against the law, and it is being hated by society very much.

    “Mr. Heang Rin, the commander of the Sihanoukville military police, should check everything again, so that it does not disgrace other members of the military police.

    “It should be remembered that previously, Mr. Ruos Phina had written about some scandals committed by Nget Vutha, like protecting illegally cut wood for a merchant who is a boss of a wood processing house behind the Phsar Leu market’s car station.” Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1704, 27-28.7.2008

    Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
    Monday, 28 July 2008


    Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1704, 27-28.7.2008

    • Military Police Protecting Illegally Cut Wood Calls a Journalist into Their Fortress and Hit Him as a Warning
    • Forest in Conservation Region in Aural Mountain Starts to Disappear and Leads to Taking of Land Illegally [Kompong Speu]


    Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #208, 27-28.7.2008

    • Siamese [Thais] Are Training to Use Weapons in Order to Be Prepared in Case Bilateral Talk in Siem Reap [on Monday] Fail


    Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6408, 28.7.2008

    • Along Cambodian-Thai Border at Oddar Meanchey, [five to six] Thai Black-Clad Soldiers [of the special border protection forces] Create Border Problems at Banteay Ampil District [entering about 100 meters from the Border Marker 22B in Kok Mon village and commune, Banteay Ampil, claiming they are in Thai territory]
    • 16 Terrorist Bombs Attack at the Same Time in Western India, Killing 29 People [26 July 2008]
    • According to a Report from Singapore, during a period of 51 Months, the Number of Tourists Declined [the decline results from problems of the world economy, from the rising price of traveling by plane, from the increasing price of fuel, as well as from problems of the international currency market]


    Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3523, 28.7.2008

    • [Opposition Party Leader] Asked to Re-Vote in Offices That Made Too Many Forms 1018 Leading to Unfair Results [identity documents required to vote were: national identification card, or passport, or civil servant, police, or army identification card, family booklet with identification pictures, or documents identifying monks; if Cambodian eligible voters do not have any of these documents, they could ask their Commune Council to establish an identification form know as Form 1018]
    • Order to Close Radio FM 93.5 [on 26 July 2008, from which the Sam Rainsy Party had bought air time to broadcast its campaign program for nearly one month] Strongly Affected Election Atmosphere in Phnom Penh
    • Siamese [Thai] Troops Continue to Dig Trenches at Keo Sekha Kirisvarak Pagoda although there Is a Foreign Affairs Ministerial Meeting of Both Countries Planned for Today
    • The Appeals Hearing of Khiev Samphan to Be Temporarily Out of Detention Might Be Conducted Soon [according to an official of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal]
    • Crimes of Cutting Trees in Kuleaen National Park Still Continue


    Rasmei Angkor, Vol.15, #3523, 28.7.2008

    • Temporary Results of the Fourth Term Election: Cambodian People’s Party Might Win 88 to 91 Seats [of a total of 123], Sam Rainsy Party Ranks Second [with 26 seats], Human Rights Ranks Third [with 3 seats], Norodom Ranariddh Party Ranks Forth [with 2 seats] and Funcinpec Ranks Firth [with 1 seat]


    Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4652, 27-28.7.2008

    • There Was a Clash between Sam Rainsy Party and Cambodian People’s Party, Injuring a Deputy Police Chief of Battambang District [at the end of the day of the election campaign on 25 July 2008]
    • Venezuela Sells Fuel at US$100 per Barrel to Spain [in total 10,000 barrels]


    Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3370, 27-28.7.2008

    • Supreme Court Will Open Samdech Krom Preah Norodom Ranariddh’s Hearing on 30 July 2008 [regarding Funcinpec Secretary-General Nhek Bun Chhay’s lawsuit, accusing the Prince of violating trust in the sale of the Funcinpec Chroy Chongva headquarters]

    Click here to have a look at the last editorial of the Mirror – where we provided detailed information about the 2003 election results, to compare them with the election results of 2008, as they become available.

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    Sunday, 27.7.2008: Comparing 2003 Election Results

    Posted on 27 July 2008. Filed under: week 570 | Tags: , , |

    The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 570

    Please have a look at the results of the 2003 election data – in the Editorial of today.

    You can find it by clicking on

    Week 570 – 2008-07-27: National Elections 2008 Today

    on top of the page, in the first line of the dark blue box.

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    Week 570 – Sunday,2008-07-27: National Elections 2008 Today

    Posted on 27 July 2008. Filed under: *Editorial*, week 570 |

    While the results of today’s election will only be known later, we bring here, as a reminder and in order to compare the results as they will come in, some data from the last National Elections in 2003 – based on the official results as published by the National Election Committee [NEC] – the results of the 2008 elections are to be published here.

    2003-07-27 National Assembly Elections Results

    Political Parties 	# seats won 	# valid votes
    
    CPP                      73                   2,447,259
    FUNCINPEC                26                   1,072,313
    Sam Rainsy Party         24                   1,130,423
    Others 	                  0                     518,842
    
    Total                   123                   5,168,837
    

    More details from 2003 are available here on the web site of the NEC, such as a list of all candidates elected as members of the National Assembly for the 3rd Term (by province, with the names, party affiliation, and age of the elected persons.

    Total votes for each party (according to the official results):

    2003 Election Results by Parties

    2003 Election Results by Parties

    Some figures related to the elections 2008 from different resources follow here:

    Again 123 seats in the National Assembly are to be filled. There are about 8.1 million voters among the roughly 14 million people of the country.

    Eleven political parties – 1,162 candidates – participate in the elections,

    Today’s election does not affect the 61 members’ seats in the Senate.

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    Saturday, 26.7.2008: Domestic Violence Still Increasing

    Posted on 26 July 2008. Filed under: week 570 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 570

    “Phnom Penh: Domestic violence remains a major issue in Khmer society – prevention and solutions are need immediately. Domestic violence becomes more cruel, serious, and alarming, especially during the first six months of 2008 this happened; and this trend has increased continually form year to year.

    “Officials of different organizations working on domestic violence reported to Khmer Sthapana on 24 July 2008 that, during the period of the first six months of 2008, domestic violence increased alarmingly, and it is believed to be result of a decline of social morality, of inefficient education, and of the poor implementation of regulations.

    “Recently, a son killed his father by using a sickle to cut his throat on 22 July 2008 in Khvet Thom, Prey Chhor, Kompong Cham. In another case, in Koh Roka Village, Koh Roka Commune, Peam Chor, Prey Veng, on 22 July 2008, a husband cut his wife’s throat with a cleaver making her bleeding all over the body because of an argument etc…

    “According to a report by the Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association – ADHOC- domestic violence increased in 2007. In 2006, the organization received 532 case reports, but in 2007, there were 632 cases which led to 29 deaths. This increase is a signal of inefficient law enforcement, aiming at the prevention and the protection of victims from domestic violence.

    “In 2007, there were 603 cases of domestic violence that led to injuries. Such violence causing injuries resulted from drunkenness, jealousy, from asserting power as the head of the family, having extra-marital relations, gambling, poverty, and the lack of education, sexual violence, etc…

    “Looking at activities which lead to violence, offenders always find reasons to create arguments – after returning home from going to places of entertainment, or when they cannot get the money they ask for; they may start to destroy everything in their house, or use insults and rude words. After that, they hit the victims with sticks, sickles, cleavers, axes, or hoes, or by kicking. Sometimes, violence leads to disability or to death of their victims.

    “This report continued to explain that because of strict traditions, some victims bear to live with offenders for years without any intervention by local authorities which might have led to solutions, until they lose their lives. Obviously, in 2007, deaths by domestic violence still increased, and this was not different from 2006.

    “There were deaths because victims had been suffered many injuries. They had informed the local authorities to help to solve problems, but they get no response, because the authorities still consider domestic violence to be a domestic problem of a family, and they think they should not interfere to solve such problems.

    “Also, it is often seen that the authorities are slow to intervene in domestic violence, and the keep things unattended unless somebody is injured or a victim is already dead before they go to investigate. This shows that regulations to stop domestic violence and to protect victims are not implemented efficiently.

    “The authorities seem not to known the regulations that allow them to intervene and to prevent arguments in time at the initial stage, in order to avoid an escalation to domestic violence.

    “It should be stressed that laws to stop domestic violence and to protect victims were approved by the National Assembly, and put into force on 24 October 2005. Though those laws became valid, they seem to be inefficient and not enforced at all, even though these laws allow the authorities, officials of the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, and neighbors of a victim to intervene at a site of dispute, to prevent domestic violence without asking for a warrant from the courts, and the authorities closest by have the duty to intervene immediately in cases of domestic violence happening to start, in order to protect the victim. The authorities do not use these laws to solve domestic violence. Generally, institutions involved use the new criminal procedures to deal with domestic violence, which is against Article 8 of the new code of criminal procedures.” Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #59, 26.7.2008

    Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
    Saturday, 26 July 2008


    Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1703, 26.7.2008

    • Cambodia Needs Vietnam and Indonesia to Help Solve the Cambodia-Siam Dispute [according to Minister of Foreign Affairs Hor Namhong on 25 July 2008]
    • After a Protest, the Chhang Leang [garment] Factory Allowed Workers Free Time to Go Voting
    • The Number of Victims by Landmines and Unexploded Ordnance Declined to 170 Persons in Six Months [40 persons less than in the same period in 2007]
    • Malaria Declined by 50% Early This Year [compared to 2007, 15,500 people had malaria, and 46 people died]
    • A Thai Pro-Government Group Attacked an Anti-Government Group, Injuring 20 People [according to Associated Press on 25 July 2008]


    Khmer Amatak, Vol.9, #5, 26-27.7.2008

    • [Prime Minister] Hun Sen Is Showing Nationalism [regarding the Preah Vihear Temple Issue] to Attract Voters


    Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #59, 26.7.2008

    • Domestic Violence Still Increasing
    • Hor Namhong Hopes that Foreign Affairs Ministerial Meeting [with Thailand] Will Come to Solutions


    Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6407, 26-27.7.2008

    • Civil Society Organizations that Observe the Election Process Declared that Election Campaigning This Year Was Better than Before [25 July 2008]
    • China Cracked Down a Terrorist Group [in Shanghai] That Had Planned to Attack the Olympic Events [24 July 2008]


    Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3522, 26.7.2008

    • Police Just Drew a Sketch of the Faces of the Criminals Who Shot Dead Mr. Khim Sambo, a Moneaksekar Khmer Journalist and His Son [age 21]
    • The Neutral and Impartial Committee for Free and Fair Elections in Cambodia Criticized the Lack of Neutrality, because the Armed Forces Participated to Support the Ruling Party [said Mr. Hang Puthea, Executive Director of the Neutral and Impartial Committee for Free and Fair Elections in Cambodia; when observers appeared near locations where there was a distributions of gifts and money to voters, the observers always saw also police, causing concern]


    Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4651, 26.7.2008

    • Election Campaign Finished without Violence
    • Police Found 6-Year-Old Swedish Girl Abducted [by her father] to Cambodia [in Pursat]

    Click here – and have a look at the last editorial – The Cambodian-Thai border crisis develops while the Khmer public is not aware what the Cambodian government representatives had agreed upon, to get the Preah Vihear Temple listed as a World Heritage Site, on a most narrowly defined piece of land.

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    Friday, 25.7.2008: European Union Delegation Comes to Study Combating Sex Tourism in Cambodia

    Posted on 26 July 2008. Filed under: week 570 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 570

    “Phnom Penh: To increase the understanding of common problems and to contribute to combat sex tourists in Cambodia efficiently is the goal of a European Union delegation, led by Mr. Jules Maaten and Ms. Sarah Ludford, that came to Cambodia.

    “In the afternoon of 23 July 2008, the European Union delegation discussed and studied some problems regarding combating sex tourism in Cambodia with senior officials of Acting for Women in Distressing Situations [AFESIP] in Phnom Penh, as well as with some national and international journalists.

    “Ms. Mam Somaly, director of AFESIP and of the Somaly Mam Foundation, said that governments of western countries should open their eyes to see the activities of their citizens who have committed crimes outside of their own countries. Frequently, they pretend to be tourists, or sometimes to be staff of humanitarian organizations in Cambodia, to find opportunities to rape children. There are more children being abused sexually by these crimes than the number of cases that come under the crack-down by the authorities.

    “Ms. Mam Somaly said, ‘In Cambodia, the Royal Government has improved the situation markedly to curb down trafficking by creating legislation against trafficking, and by creating national structures of cooperation against trafficking.’ However, the Royal Government has to do more, especially to strengthen procedures against trafficking and legislation beyond what has already been achieved.

    “It should be remembered that Ms. Mam Somaly has saved 4,000 children from sexual slavery during the last decades. She created AFESIP to provide consultation and rehabilitation for victims in several centers in Cambodia, in Thailand, in Laos, and in Vietnam. Recently, she has been supported by friends who are famous stars, business people, lawyers, and other generous people, to create the Somaly Mam Foundation, which aims to eliminate the root causes of human trafficking by launching broad public campaigns, to struggle with public opinion about issues relating to human trafficking and sexual exploitation of children in the country, in the region, and internationally.

    “Mr. Jules Maaten, the European Union delegation leader and a member of the European parliament from the Netherlands, said that Cambodia has become an important location for criminals to rape children; since some years, many children have been used as sex slaves for tourists from western countries, and for the staff of some humanitarian organizations. ‘Now, we have to open our eyes to see this situation and to take actions against this modern form of slavery.’

    “Ms. Sarah Ludford, a member of the European Parliament from London, pointed to the fact that criminals have often escaped from detention and from punishment, because of incompetent police to bring those criminals to court for punishment. Arrested suspects often bribe their way out of the country and flee to their home countries. Only one out of five cases leads to a conviction, and only 3% of the suspects have been convicted after being accused of raping children.

    “After the discussion, Ms. Mam Somaly and the European Union delegation agreed with three requests: 1. Members of the member states of the European Union should work towards a stronger role for the police of the European Union to be authorized and to receive the means to train police officials, prosecutors, and judges about child sex trafficking and exploitation. 2. The European Union should pay more attention and exchange information with third countries, to exchange data to help identify suspects for prosecution. 3. The European Union should include information about sentences of sex tourists as well as of criminals who are not citizens of the European Union into the [European] Schengen data information system.” Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1702, 25.7.2008

    Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
    Friday, 25 July 2008


    Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1702, 25.7.2008

    • European Union Delegation Comes to Study Combating Sex Tourism in Cambodia
    • Nearly 1,000 [Garment] Workers of Chhang Leang Factory at Stung Meanchey Do Not Have Days Off to Go to Vote [this led to a protest on 24 July 2008]


    Khmer Amatak, Vol.9, #616, 25.7.2008

    • Siam [Thai] King Promotes the Honor of Samak Sundaravej while There Is Dispute with Cambodia [no specific proof given]; Siamese Troops Still Continue to Invade the Border


    Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #206, 25.7.2008

    • Siam [Thailand] Rejected to Solve the Dispute through ASEAN or through the UN

    Note:
    Singapore’s Foreign Minister and at present ASEAN Chair said Thursday [24.7.2008] a border dispute that recently flared between Thailand and Cambodia should never have become a problem, and it was unnecessary to take it to the U.N. Security Council.

    Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #58, 25.7.2008

    • Cambodia Has Suspended Its Complaint to the UN and Waits for New Results from Negotiations [28 July 2008 in Siem Reap, after the Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej called Prime Minister Hun Sen at 4:30 p.m. Thursday]
    • Some Political Parties [Sam Rainsy Party, Funcinpec, and Human Rights Party] Show National Unity Regarding the Dispute with Thailand
    • Handicap International Belgium Comments on Traffic Accidents in Cambodia [the head of the organization, Mr. Bruno Leclercq, said that traffic safety problems are complicated; there were 27,500 victims, and 17,000 vehicles were involved in 2007. In Cambodia there are more than four people killed every day. Looking at the first two months of 2008, the numbers were again higher]
    • The Sale and Drinking of Alcohol Is Prohibited One Day before [and on the election day of 27 July 2008 – according to an instruction by the Phnom Penh Municipality]

    Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6406, 25.7.2008

    • More Razor Wire Is Added to Protect the [Preah Vihear] Temple; [Minister of Defense] Tea Banh: We Absolutely Defend the Preah Vihear Temple to Belong to Khmer; [Minister of Information] Khieu Kanharith: Thailand Has to Know that Now Thailand Is Violating [Cambodia] and Is Becoming a Country that Violates International Laws
    • Border Police Post 911 Destroyed a Thai Camera Put Secretly by Thai Soldiers to Observe Khmer Activities [Poipet]


    Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3521, 25.7.2008

    • Sam Rainsy Parliamentarians [on 24 July 2008] Asked International Observers to Prevent Tricks to Forge or Change Ballots by Officials of the Cambodian People’s Party who are with the National Election Committee


    Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4650, 25.7.2008

    • Six to Ten Companies [including Sokimex of Oknha Sok Kong and the ACLEDA Bank] Will Cooperate to Establish a Stock Market [in 2009]
    • Strong Earthquake [6.8 on the Richter scale] Attacked Japan [injuring 16 people seriously – 24 July 2008]
    • Bill Gates and Michael Bloomberg, the Mayor of New York Will Grant US$500 Million [to stop people around the world smoking cigarettes; according to the World Health Organization, tobacco will kill already 1 billion people in the 21st century]


    Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3368, 25.7.2008

    • Ms. Condoleezza Rice Expressed Concern and Suggested a Peaceful Solution for the Dispute between Cambodia and Thailand [24 July 2008 in a security conference of ASEAN, held in Singapore; she said Cambodia should not send the dispute to the UN Security council and should settle it bilaterally]


    Note:

    Among the regular UN Security Council members only France considers that the UN should discuss this issue – all others suggest bilateral discussion on the basis of existing documents.

    Click here – and have a look at the last editorial – The Cambodian-Thai border crisis develops while the Khmer public is not aware what the Cambodian government representatives had agreed upon, to get the Preah Vihear Temple listed as a World Heritage Site, on a most narrowly defined piece of land.

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    Thursday, 24.7.2008: Develop Jobs and Provide Vocational Training to Reduce Poverty

    Posted on 25 July 2008. Filed under: week 570 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 570

    “Phnom Penh: In order to help the citizens from poverty, strategies of the government have to emphasize the provision of jobs which promote productivity and increase family income – this means that jobs and work are important ways to free the citizens from poverty.

    “During the third terms (2003 to 2007) of the Cambodian government led by Samdech Akak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen, work and vocational training have significantly contributed to develop the national economy and to alleviate poverty of the citizens.

    “The labor market is very broad and complicated, covering from work at small villages to work at big enterprises, with workers of different races. Nowadays, Cambodia’s main labor force reserve is in rural areas, so we should not overlook the need of our citizens who need the most basic and simple skills to improve the livelihood of their families.

    “According to a report of the Ministry of Labor and Vocational Training, in 2004, the agricultural sector used up to 60% of the total labor force, but this sector contributed only 32% to the GDP. This showed that agricultural productivity was still low, so that citizens working in this sector earned low incomes.

    “Mr. Chea Sophoan, secretary of state of the Ministry of Labor and Vocational Training, said recently in an intervention during a national conference about the improvement of the life of citizens through different accomplishments – implementing the Rectangular Strategy of the Royal Government from 2004 to 2007 – that as a result of training and other activities, the number of trainees in the technical and in the vocational sectors increased steadily, in 2005 there were 27,894; in 2006 there were 47,987; and in 2007 there were 88,367.

    “In 2006, the number of students studying for university degrees was 94,310, where 92% studied skills related to the service sector, 5% studied related to the industrial sector, and 3% studied agriculture. As for students who studied in vocational technical schools (for ‘associate degrees’), the number was 16,912, equal to only 15%. So the supply of new members of the labor force did not responded to the needs of the labor market.

    “At the same time when addressing problems in the agricultural sector, as seen above, also the garment sector faces problems.

    “At the time when Vietnam became a member of the World Trade Organization [January 2007], quota for the export of garments came to an end.

    “Barriers put up by the United States and by the European Community against garment imports from the People’s Republic of China will expire on 1 January 2009.

    “The Generalized System of Preferences [GSP – a system under which industrialized countries grant trade preferences to developing countries] of the United States will continue until 2010.

    “The economy of the United States is declining.

    “The above factors provide the starting point for the competition of the Cambodian garment industry.

    “Based on recent studies, the production efficiency is very low – around only 30% to 40% – but Cambodia should have reached the level of 60% to 70%. The increase in productivity is an important factor to bring success in international competition.

    “Generally speaking, the quality and the level of education of the labor force are still low. Studies about the labor market show that the development of capacity and of skills of the labor force are an important factor to increase productivity, increase family income, and reduce poverty.

    “To find adequate jobs for young people and to provide the labor market with a labor force that has enough capacity and skills requires to develop a realistic vocational and technical education system as a priority that cannot be disregarded.

    “It should be noted that previously, the Ministry of Labor and Vocational Training had set certain policy goals: 1. To provide services for those who seek jobs at private enterprises and institutions, and 2. To contribute to create more jobs, to reduce unemployment, and to increase income.

    “It is therefore important to assist in training basic skills for citizens in rural areas. Such training not only helps to improve the livelihood of poor citizens, but it also provides opportunities for them to continually promote their levels of knowledge and skills through training, organized from low to higher levels, and the levels move up steadily. Vocational and technical educational systems are the second provider of an opportunity for young people who had lost the possibility for general studies when they were children in the general education system [from grade 1 to grade 12]. To help change the social situation of poor people is an important factor to gain social stability, and this could also bring harmony into the Kingdom of Cambodia.” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4649, 24.7.2008

    Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
    Thursday, 24 July 2008


    Deum Tnot, Vol.1, #16, 24-25.7.2008

    • Prime Minister Hun Sen’s Eldest Son [Hun Manet] Was Assigned to a Position in the National Committee on Counter-Terrorism [with the rank of captain, by sub-decree #75, dated 29 January 2008]

    Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1701, 24.7.2008

    • Price of Fuel and Khmer Riel Remain Stable in July 2008 [fuel is Riel 5,750 per liter, and Riel 4,160 is equal to US$1.-]


    Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #205, 24.7.2008

    • The Complaint of Cambodia Is Not Yet Included in the July Agenda of the UN Security Council; Giovanni Boccardi, Chief, World Heritage Committee, Asia/Pacific Unit, Said That They Cannot Intervene in a Border Dispute
    • Sam Rainsy Party Parliamentarians Asked the National Assembly [on 22 July 2008] to Consider the Joint Communique between [Deputy Prime Minister and Senior Minister in Charge of the Council of Ministers] Sok An and [former Thai Minister of Foreign Affairs] Nappadon Pattama to Be Invalid
    • Khmer Troops Have Sent Weapons to the Disputed Region to Fight Air Force Planes and to Fight Tanks
    • The Cambodian Confederation of Unions [on 23 July 2008] Called All Taxi Drivers and Bus Companies to Keep Prices of Transportation Normal during the Traveling Period [of workers] to Vote

    Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #57, 24.7.2008

    • A Very Well-Known Pharmaceutical Company [P.P.M] in Cambodia Calls for the Use of Local Medicines [because most of Cambodian people prefer medicines imported from foreign countries]
    • The UN Considers the Dispute between Cambodia and Thailand as a Hot Agenda


    Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4649, 24.7.2008

    • Develop Jobs and Provide Vocational Training to Reduce Poverty
    • The UN Will Hold a Meeting on Thursday Morning about the Preah Vihear Dispute
    • [Minister of Information] Khieu Kanharith: Cambodia Takes a High Moral Stand to Solve the Border Issue [by depending on international regulations as policy]
    • An Indian Rice Millionaire [who is a close friend of Royal Cambodian Armed Forces Commander-in-Chief Ke Kim Yan] Has Asked to Buy 100,000 Tonnes of Rice per Year from Banteay Meanchey [according to Ung Ouen, Banteay Meanchey governor]
    • Son Killed Father Using a Sickle to Cut His Throat [because his father often caused domestic violence, Prey Chhor, Kompong Cham]
    • A US General [General Norton Schwartz] Warned Russia about Basing Nuclear Weapons Capable Bombers in Cuba [22 July 2008]


    Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3367, 24.7.2008

    • The Second Negotiation of ASEAN about the Khmer-Siam [Thailand] Disputed Region Failed [23 July 2008]
    • There Are Nearly 90,000 National, International, and Political Observers for the Election [on 27 July 2008]

    Click here – and have a look at the last editorial – The Cambodian-Thai border crisis develops while the Khmer public is not aware what the Cambodian government representatives had agreed upon, to get the Preah Vihear Temple listed as a World Heritage Site, on a most narrowly defined piece of land.

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    Wednesday, 23.7.2008: The United Nations Asserts that Cambodia Is among the Least Developed Countries

    Posted on 24 July 2008. Filed under: week 570 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 570

    “Developing the country nearly 30 years by borrowing money from foreign countries and by receiving hundreds of millions of dollars each year, by 2008, Cambodia is still a country among forty nine countries that have very little development. According to a statement of the UN Conference on Trade and Development [UNCTAD] on 18 July 2008, 49 countries were evaluated by the United Nations to be Least Developed Countries [The Least Developed Countries Report 2008, Growth, Poverty and the Terms of Development Partnership, full report: PDF, 197 pages, 1719Kb].

    Among the 49 countries 10 countries are from Asia, 5 countries from the Pacific Ocean region, 1 country from the Caribbean, and 33 countries from Africa. Countries from Asia are Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma, Cambodia, East Timor, Laos, Maldives, Nepal, and Yemen. The evaluation of the UN about trade and development are based on three criteria:

  • the first criterion is ‘low income’ of citizens, based on the average national income per capita during three years [2002-2004], and countries were added to this list if the figure is less than US$750;
  • the second criterion, it based on ‘human assets’, [based on indicators of nutrition, health (child mortality rate), school enrollment, and adult literacy rate]; and
  • the third criterion depends on the ‘economic vulnerability’ [based on indicators of natural shocks like instability of agricultural production; trade shocks like instability of exports of goods and services, exposure to shocks like strong dependency on agriculture, or merchandise export, or being affected by economic isolation].
  • “Cambodia has just waken up from war that had lasted many years, and receives about US$400 million to US$600 million every year. This does not cover loans from some countries, and national funds collected through taxes and through other means.

    “Previously, the Economic Institute of Cambodia and the World Bank had estimated that Cambodia loses each year at least US$300 million to US$500 million by corruption. Also Mr. Joseph Mussomeli, US ambassador to Cambodia, has criticized corruption in Cambodia, claiming that the Cambodian government has no clear policies to fight corruption; just to speak about this word a lot may make it sound beautiful without any effect. Also, Transparency International found that Cambodia is among the countries in the world having most serious corruption problems [Global corruption Report 2008].

    “Some economic observers and officials of civil society organizations agree with the data of UNCTAD, asserting that Cambodia is among the Least Developed Countries; this evaluation is in line with the real situation. It is true that the government led by Prime Minister Hun Sen owes much debt and received funds of hundreds of millions of dollars every year, but there is not much significant development. At present, 36% of Khmer citizens still live under the poverty line with Riel 4,000 [approx. US$0.98] per day, while many leaders and corrupt officials became millionaires and billionaires.

    “Economic observers and officials of civil society organizations in Cambodia said that hundreds of millions of dollars that the government of Prime Minister Hun Sen, vice-president of the Cambodian People’s Party, has received from foreign countries, and funds from the international community every year, are not spent to develop the country. A considerable part of that money has gone into the pockets of leaders and of corrupt officials which led to very little economic growth, and the benefits from that economic growth do not reach the poor, but it benefits corrupt officials who are partisans of powerful leaders. This creates an ever larger gap between the rich and the poor, and makes the nation to face a serious crisis.

    “An official, who asked that his name not be mentioned, said that strong corruption in the Ministry of Commerce, managed by Cham Prasidh, is one reason making Cambodian commerce not to grow as in neighboring countries, and the country has little development. Just to register a company, an investor has to spend much money to corrupt officials close to Cham Prasidh. Therefore, big foreign investors do not dare to come to invest in Cambodia, because they hate corruption. Another thing is that Cambodia has no anti-corruption law which meets international standards.

    “Some independent observers noticed that corruption and bureaucracy occurring strongly in important state institutions of Cambodia makes Cambodia to develop little, although the country owes nearly US$4 billion and has received hundreds of millions of dollars from the international community. State institutions ruined by corruption and bureaucracy are the Council of Ministers, the Ministry of Economy and Finance, the Ministry of Commerce, the Customs and Excise Department, the Council for the Development of Cambodia, and the Department of Economic Police of the Ministry of Interior. As for the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs and Inspection, managed by Men Samon, a member of the Central Committee of the Cambodian People’s Party, does nothing to observe, prevent, and eliminate corruption.

    “Independent observers noticed that also some important institutions and donor countries for Cambodia do not help Cambodia to eliminate corruption effectively. Clearly, Mr. Ian Porter and Ms. Nisha Agrawal, Country Director for Cambodia and [former] Cambodia Country Manager of the World Bank, seem to be sensitive about corruption, which absorbs even development funds of the World Bank. But even when corruption and bureaucracy in important state institutions of the Hun Sen’s government grew stronger, the World Bank provided more funds to Hun Sen’s government, although they knew that such funds do not provide advantages to Khmer poor citizens.

    “Analysts said that in order for Cambodia to develop soon, the Khmer citizens countrywide have to defeat corrupt leaders, who destroy and steal from the nation, through the election on 27 July 2008. This means that Khmer citizens countrywide have to vote to dismiss the Cambodian People’s Party from power, because the government led by the Cambodian People’s Party for many terms does not improve the national economy and does not make citizens to live with a richer livelihood. The new leader, that Khmer citizens have to choose, is Mr. Sam Rainsy, the president of the opposition party who is an economic expert and who is willing to serve the citizens’ and to protect the nation’s interests.” Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3519, 23.7.2008

    Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
    Wednesday, 23 July 2008


    Areyathor, Vol.15, #1344, 23-24.7.2008

    • [UN Secretary-General] Mr. Ban Ki-Moon Asked Both Sides to Solve the Dispute Peacefully [on 21 July 2008]; Deputy Prime Minister Hor Namhong Summoned [on 22 July 2008] the Ambassadors to Inform Them about the Thai Invasion into Khmer Sovereignty after Releasing a Statement [to inform Cambodian compatriots about the invasion by Thailand]


    Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1700, 23.7.2008

    • Sam Rainsy Party Supports a Letter of Samdech Dekcho Hun Sen to the Director-General of UNESCO [Mr. Koïchirô Matsuura – 松浦晃一郎]
    • Serbia Arrested Mr. Radovan Karadžić [on 21 July 2008 after he had been hiding himself eleven years – he is accused of having committed war crimes in Bosnia based on nationalism, especially to be responsible for the massacre of at least 7,500 Muslim men and boys in the Bosnian town of Srebrenica [pronounced srɛbrɛnitsa] in July 1995]


    Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #56, 23.7.2008

    • The Royal Government of Cambodia Asked UNESCO [on 21 July 2008] to Take Action to Protect the World Heritage Site [because Thailand has sent troops armed with all kinds of weapons and tanks to the Prasat Pagoda which is near the Preah Vihear Temple]
    • The Royal Palace Provided Food and Materials [such as plastic sheets to be used as roofs for temporary camps], mosquito nets, and blankets] to Troops at the Preah Vihear Temple [21 July 2008]
    • The European Community Deploys 130 Observers for the Election in Cambodia [to be held on 27 July 2008]
    • Women Should Not Get Affected by Having to Absorb the Smoke from Cigarette Smokers
    • Myanmar Needs US$1 Billion after the Nargis Tropical Cyclone


    Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3519, 23.7.2008

    • The United Nations Asserts that Cambodia Is among the Least Developed Countries
    • The Asian Network for Free Elections (ANFREL * ) Criticized the Ruling Party for the Excessive Use of the Media
    • The Number of Tourists Coming through the Poipet Border Crossing Declines [by 20% to 30%]; Khmer Workers Return to the Country Gradually [some said that they come for the election, but some said that they are worried about the confrontation between Khmer and Thai troops which could escalate and would affect their security]

    * …during the last few weeks, ANFREL observers have noticed that most media: TVs, Radios and local Newspapers have not maintained as much professional conduct in their work as expected. Most have not been fair in broadcasting or writing the news of political parties equally. Information of candidates from ruling parties and opposition parties are quite imbalanced. Observers have requested the NEC to encourage more cooperation from all media to make the electoral environment more fair and democratic.


    Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4648, 23.7.2008

    • Cambodia Asked the UN Security Council to Solve the Problem of the Invasion by Thailand; the UN Security Council Will Hold a Meeting on 28 July 2008
    • [Former Khmer Rouge leader] Mr. Khiev Samphan Has a New Lawyer [Mr. Sar Sovann, who is nine years younger than Khiev Samphan, 76]


    Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3366, 23.7.2008

    • The Human Rights Party, with Kem Sokha as President, Knows since before the Elections that It Would Lose, and Declared that Unity [with other parties] Will Be Established after the Election [according to Mr. Keat Sokun, vice-president of the Human Rights Party, in a multi-party program organized by the Committee for Free and Fair Elections]
    • Kandal Is a Province That Has the Most Illegal Fishing [because this province has big rivers which allow fishery]

    Click here – and have a look at the last editorial – The Cambodian-Thai border crisis develops while the Khmer public is not aware what the Cambodian government representatives had agreed upon, to get the Preah Vihear Temple listed as a World Heritage Site, on a most narrowly defined piece of land.

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    Tuesday, 22.7.2008: In the First Six Months of 2008, There Were 3511 Traffic Accidents and 903 People Died

    Posted on 23 July 2008. Filed under: week 570 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 570

    “Phnom Penh: From year to year, there are more and more traffic accidents which led to an emergency alert about this catastrophe that is more devastating than AIDS and mines’ accidents. During the first six months of 2008, the total number of traffic accidents was 3,511 which killed 903 people; it increased 17%, compared to the same period of the first six month of 2007.

    “According to a report from Lieutenant-Colonel Luy Chhin, who heads a road traffic office – General Trey Pho Khan of the Department of Public Order of the Ministry of Interior confirmed this report – which also Khmer Sthapana received on 21 July 2008, the number of traffic accidents of all the 24 provinces and towns increased markedly.

    “The report shows that during the first six months of 2008, there were 3,511 traffic accidents countrywide, which killed 903 people – 705 male and 198 female; the number of accidents increased by 519, equal to 17% more, compared to the same period of 2007, when there were 2,992 accidents and only 724 people died. The 3,511 traffic accidents resulted in 903 deaths, 2,856 seriously injured people, 3,390 lightly injured people, the destruction of 306 heavy vehicles, among them 1,154 cars, 3,646 motorcycles, 305 other vehicles; 397 pedestrians were also affected.

    “Major Suos Sokha, deputy director of the vehicle registration management office, and of the department for the registration of boats and ships of the Ministry of Interior, reported to Khmer Sthapana on 21 July 2008 the reasons that lead to the increase of traffic accidents in the first six months of 2008: these are driving in violation of traffic laws with 1,560 cases, riding motorcycles without helmets with 778 cases, not obeying priority traffic rights with 502 cases, driving while being drunk with 439 cases, speed racing with each other with 349 cases, and 261 cases of careless driving etc…

    “It should be noted that the statistics of road traffic accidents in 2007 countrywide, report 5,870 cases which caused 1,434 deaths, 1,121 males and 313 females were killed; 4,860 people were seriously injured, 5,540 people were lightly injured, 528 heavy vehicles, 1,871 cars, 5,607 motorcycles, and 444 different vehicles were destroyed, and US$2,699,784 was wasted.” Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #55, 22.7.2008

    Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
    Tuesday, 22 July 2008

    Chakraval, Vol.16, #2795, 22.7.2008

    • As the First Step of Negotiations, Thailand Requested Cambodia to Withdraw the Troops from the Land They Presently Control; the ASEAN President [Mr. George Yeo – simplified Chinese: 杨荣文; traditional Chinese: 楊榮文; pinyin: Yáng Róngwén – Singaporean Foreign Minister and at present ASEAN Chair*] Asked Both Sides to Be Patient and Solve the Dispute Based on Good Relations; the Situation of Having Deployed Troops on Both Sides of the Border at the Preah Vihear Temple Is Still Tense

    * “The ASEAN Standing Committee, under the Chairmanship of the Foreign Minister of the country-in-chair, is mandated to coordinate the work of the Association in between the annual ASEAN Ministerial Meetings.”

    Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1699, 22.7.2008

    • The 41st ASEAN Ministerial Meeting Was Held in Singapore [discussing the border dispute between Cambodia and Thailand, evaluating the destruction by the Nargis tropical cyclone in Burma, and talking about the integration of ASEAN constitutions, and about regional security – 21 July 2008]
    • Three People Were Arrested by Military Police after Chopping a Leader of Workers to Death [after losing money to the victim while gambling – Ratanakiri]
    • Ms. Su Kyi Will Be Released Soon [Military Junta of Myanmar informed the ASEAN members that the opposition leader, Ms. Aung San Su Kyi, might be released in about six months]

    Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #55, 22.7.2008

    • In the First Six Months of 2008, There Were 3511 Traffic Accidents and 903 People Died
    • The Thai Side Requests Cambodia to Accept Three Principles [during the negotiations on 21 July 2008: 1. Thailand requested Cambodia to withdraw its troops, and Thailand will also withdraw its troops to avoid an armed confrontation. 2. The benefits from the Preah Vihear Temple should be handled as a joint operation, from which Cambodia gets 60% and Thailand gets 40% 3. Cambodia and Thailand should cooperate with each other to clear mines from the Preah Vihear Temple region and from other surrounding areas together]
    • US$2,000 Announced Reward to Be Given to Anyone Who Provides Information That Leads to the Arrest of the Criminal Who Abducted a [Swedish] Girl from Her Mother [the six-year-old girl, Alicia, has been abducted by her father, Torgeir Nordbø, from Sweden, when he visited her; he is believed to be hiding in Cambodia]
    • [Fishery] Crimes During Prohibited No-Fishing Season Increase [Siem Reap]


    Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #66403, 22.7.2008

    • Obama Promises to Withdraw Army from Iraq If He Wins the Election [but he will send 10,000 more troops to Afghanistan to defeat the Taliban]

    Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3518, 22.7.2008

    • [Former Khmer Rough Leader] Khiev Samphan Still Has No New Defense Lawyer


    Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4647, 22.7.2008

    • Police Are Deployed at Gold and Money Exchange Shops because of Security Concerns [Banteay Meanchey]
    • Five Outstanding Cambodian Students Went to Take Part in the International Mathematical Olympiad in Vietnam


    Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3365, 22.7.2008

    • Japan Sends 23 Election Observers for Sunday 27 July 2008
    • Neak Loeang Electricity Company Still Charges Riel 3,200 [approx. US$0.80] per Kilowatt [in Phnom Penh the price is Riel 610, approx. US$0.15 per kw]

    Click here – and have a look at the last editorial – The Cambodian-Thai border crisis develops while the Khmer public is not aware what the Cambodian government representatives had agreed upon, to get the Preah Vihear Temple listed as a World Heritage Site, on a most narrowly defined piece of land.

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