Week 643

When Is It Possible to Trust, or Not to Trust the Law? – Sunday, 20.12.2009

Posted on 21 December 2009. Filed under: *Editorial*, Week 643 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 643

Several events during the past week provide a lot of food for thought. Some cases have been extending over several weeks before they came to a surprising end, others started only recently – but in their mutual links, they leave the public with a lot of questions.

It is not the task of the media to respond to many of these question – but to collect information and to share it publicly. How the answers have to be found, for the whole society, is clear according to Article 51 of the Constitution of the Kingdom of Cambodia: “The Cambodian people are the masters of their own country. All power belongs to the people.” This is the starting point, so the people need to know what is going on.

The next point is (still according to the same Article 51): “The people exercise these powers through the National Assembly, the Senate, the Royal Government and the Judiciary” – about which the constitution adds an important point of clarification: “The legislative, executive, and judicial powers shall be separate.”

The people elect the legislative, which appoints the executive, and the judicial power cares that new laws conform to the Constitution and are implemented properly.

The past week saw several events where the public cannot easily understand how public procedures work and laws and applied – and this is in some cases made more difficult because the press does not cover some areas in detail. The following is just a series of descriptions. How they are to be understood is not clear in all cases.

An employee handling air traffic control information at the airport shared information over the telephone about the Flight Plan of the private jet-plane of Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra. This employee was convicted to seven years in prison for allegedly having engaged in an act of spying. But according to some public media reports, information about the flight plan was shared with the Thai embassy only 20 minutes after the plane had already landed. In addition, in many countries, flight plans are in principle public, not secret (except for military aircraft in combat or military training). Were flight plans not publicly available, in national and in international Flight Information Regions, there would be a lot of near or real accidents in flight. We tried to find any information in the press about the legal status of Flight Plan related information – we did not see any.

In this, and in some other of the cases, the Mirror does not claim to have all information publicly available, though we try. If there is important information publicly available but we missed it, we are always grateful to receive additional information in the form of Comments.

The legally convicted spy was freed by a Royal Pardon within less than a week – in response to requests by representatives of the opposition party of a neighboring country, and, as the Prime Minister said, also in view of the concerns and the love of the mother of the convict to her son. That the convicted spy was set free was welcomed widely, including by the Thai government.
As a general reaction, the Sam Rainsy Party Parliamentarian Mr. Son Chhay said that the Prime Minister had suggested a Royal Pardon to the King, though the court had claimed to have enough evidence for a legal conviction to serve seven years in prison, so the Prime Minister might also initiate the procedures to have the Khmer people set free, now in prison over land disputes, who were jailed when they just protested when the land they were living on for many years was taken away.

Surely there are many mothers caring for their sons in a similar way as the mother of the convicted Thai spy.

The former Thai prime minister, Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra, now often also identified as a billionaire because of the huge economic gains of his telecommunications companies during his time as prime minister, had been ousted from office by a bloodless military coup. But later, he was also convicted for corruption – related to the sale of public property to his wife, and three of his lawyers were arrested, arrested of leaving about US$60,000 to officials at the Thai high court, handling his case. During the appeal process, he asked for bail to leave the country for some business in China for some days – but he did not keep the conditions of the bail agreement and stays ever since in other countries.

When Mr. Thaksin, in legal terms a convicted fugitive, was invited to Cambodia as an adviser to the Prime Minister on economic affairs, the Thai government made an extradition request based on a Cambodian-Thai extradition agreement. The Cambodian Ministry of Foreign Affairs was reported to have refused to even receive the documents from the Thai embassy, claiming the conviction by the Thai courts was politically motivated. Interpol sees this differently: Interpol is prepared to help locate Mr. Thaksin as a convicted fugitive.

On Saturday, 19 December 2009, the Cambodian authorities arrested and handed over 20 Uighur people to the Chinese authorities, that had asked for their extradition, claiming they are criminals (though two of them are said to be children). They applied for recognition as refugees with the office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees – UNHCR – in Phnom Penh, but the UN interviews with them had not yet been finished. They were not, in legal terms, convicted for anything in China, there had been no court hearings on them. “They were led to Cambodia by the leader of a terrorist group, but I do not want to mention the name,” Mr. Khieu Sopheak, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Interior, is quoted. And the spokesperson of the Council of Ministers, Mr. Phay Siphan, is quoted to have said that they were deported to China “because of Cambodia’s obligations as a sovereign state.” Obviously this would apply to both China and Thailand.

In addition, Cambodia has signed the UN Convention on the Status of Refugees, adopted by the United Nations in 1951. The regional spokesperson of the UNHCR called the deportation, before the end of the interviews, a “grave breach of international refugee law” – to which Cambodia had actually subscribed.

The Thai government declared that a normalization of diplomatic relations with Cambodia would require that Cambodia terminates the agreement with Mr. Shinawatra as economic adviser, and not to continue to call a legal conviction for corruption as politically motivated. But the spokesperson of the Cambodian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said these conditions are “nonsense.” Prime Minister Hun Sen added that relations with the Thai government cannot be normalized, unless the present Thai government is replaced.

Such statements are of a dimension which has never existed before in ASEAN, with a tradition of not interfering into the internal affairs of another country, like calling for a change of government. Even in relation to the present military leadership of Myanmar, ASEAN states have only called for the institution of a democratic process in Myanmar.

The Nation of Bangkok wrote in an analysis:

“The dispute is one thing, but the most important thing is that the incident not pose a risk to Asean solidarity,” Tommy Koh, chairman of the grouping’s task force, was quoted as saying by [the Chinese] Xinhua News Agency. “I’ve asked my colleagues how they would have felt if [a neighboring country] had done to us what Hun Sen did to Thailand,” said one Asean diplomat even before the Thai-Cambodian conflict deteriorated into a spy farce and relations sank to new lows. An expert on Asean affairs said: “No other Asean leader in the grouping’s long history has ever called for the destruction of a neighboring government. This is beyond everything we have experienced.”

The present situation will probably be remembered in the history of ASEAN as a new turning point, testing the very fabric of the ASEAN community.

Finally, the meaning and the role of the law is extremely tested in another way in Cambodia itself: There are two cases, where the president of the largest opposition party, and leader of the government, are quoted to have said that they have no respect for the calling of a court:

  • The opposition party president, Mr. Sam Rainsy: I Do Not Care about the Court That Serves the Ruling Party Only [he was sued by the Svay Rieng Municipal Court for removing temporary Cambodian-Vietnamese border markers]
  • Prime Minister Hun Sen stated that all recently summoned witnesses, who are presently holding high offices in the Royal Government – like the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Economy and Finance and he himself – do not need to cooperate with the Khmer Rouge Tribunal.

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The Khmer Rouge Tribunal Submitted a Funding Proposal for US$46 Million for 2010 and More Than US$47 Million for 2011 – Saturday, 19.12.2009

Posted on 20 December 2009. Filed under: Week 643 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 643

“Phnom Penh: An official of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal stated on 18 December 2009 that the investigating judges of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal decided to charge the former Head of State of Democratic Kampuchea, Khieu Samphan, with an additional crime, genocide, besides two previous charges: crimes against humanity and serious violations of the Geneva Conventions of 1949 [“The Geneva Conventions consist of four treaties and three additional protocols that set the standards in international law for humanitarian treatment of the victims of war”].

“The additional charge was made a day after the Khmer Rouge Tribunal sent Khieu Samphan to a hospital for a medical checkup and after his two comrades Ieng Sary and Nuon Chea were accused with the same charge on 17 December 2008.

“The head of Public Affairs Office of the tribunal, Mr. Reach Sambath, told Koh Santephea via phone on 18 December 2009 that the investigating judges decided to charge Khieu Samphan in addition with genocide.

“Regarding the judgment to sentence [former Tuol Sleng prison chief] Duch to serve time in prison, no official date has been specified. But according to Mr. Reach Sambath, the tribunal will announce the judgment on Duch in early 2010, the date has not yet been set.

“Mr. Reach Sambath added that the investigating judges plan to finish the investigations for the Case 002 in the second week of January 2010. However, the tribunal has not yet specified the date for the hearing on this case. The Case 002 relates to four accused, who are in detention: Nuon Chea, Khieu Samphan, Ieng Sary, and Ieng Thirith. All are old and have diferent illnesses.

“The hearings of Case 002 are planed to start in early 2010.

“In the meantime, the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC), the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, announced on 18 December 2009 that a proposal for funds for the tribunal, to support the process in 2010 and in 2011, was submitted to the United Nations Assistance to the Khmer Rouge Trials (UNKRT) and to partner countries of the Group of Interested States of the tribunal, during a meeting in New York this week. The presentation of the proposal was led by the acting head and the deputy acting head of the Administration of the tribunal, Mr. Tony Kranh and Mr. Knut Rosandhaug.

“The announcement went on to say that according to an estimation of the funds needed for this court for the process of hearings in the upcoming two years, the ECCC is requesting approval of the requested funds of US$46 million for 2010 and US$47.3 for 2011, where the international side of the ECCC needs US$34.5 million for 2010 and US$35.6 million for 2011, including reserve funds, while the Cambodian side needs US$11.5 million for 2010 and US$11.8 million for 2011, including reserve funds.

“The annual expenses might increase, because the ECCC has to conduct more activities which need full time work, and also because the trial chamber will start to work full time from mid 2010.

“The requested funds cover also expenses for the work of defense lawyers relating to other cases. The actual 2010 to 2011 funds of the ECCC will be announced publicly after they will have been approved by the partner countries of the ECCC.” Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6835, 19-20.12.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Saturday, 19 December 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #366, 19-21.12.2009

  • [Thai Deputy Prime Minister] Suthep Thaugsuban: Bangkok Will Restrict Its Position [for diplomatic ties] if Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen Ignores the Conditions [to remove convicted and fugitive Mr. Thaksin’s position as economic advisor, refusing to honor extradition agreement]
  • Two Suspects Are Arrested over Acid Attack against TV9 Beauty Contestant Winner
  • Cambodia to Send 22 Uighur People Back to China [according to statements from Cambodian officials]
  • The Republic of Korea Grants the Ministry of Land Management US$2.5 Million [to create a map of the country and to develop a master plan for infrastructure, data, and geography in Cambodia]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2128, 19.12.2009

  • The Khmer Rouge Tribunal Charged [former Khmer Rouge leader] Khieu Samphan with an Additional Crime [genocide]
  • Cambodia and Vietnam Vow to Strengthen Solidarity and to Finish Putting Border Markers by the End of 2012

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #, 19-21.12.2009

  • [Opposition party president] Mr. Sam Rainsy: I Do Not Care about the Court That Serves the Ruling Party Only [he was sued by the Svay Rieng Municipal Court for removing temporary Cambodian-Vietnamese border markers]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6835, 19-20.12.2009

  • The Khmer Rouge Tribunal Submitted a Funding Proposal for US$46 Million for 2010 and More Than US$47 Million for 2011
  • [Thai ousted and fugitive prime minister] Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra’s Younger Brother and Niece Entered Cambodia [to visit him]
  • More Than US$400 Million Is Needed for Clearing All Mines [on 600 km2] within Ten Years [according to the Cambodian Mine Action and Victim Assistance Authority]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5077, 19.12.2009

  • Tourism Officials Forecasted that in 2009, the Tourist Arrivals Will Be More Than Two Millions [within 11 months of 2009, there were already 1.9 million arrivals, increasing by 2%]

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Within 10 Months Cambodian-Vietnamese Trade Amounted to US$1.04 Billion – Friday, 18.12.2009

Posted on 18 December 2009. Filed under: Week 643 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 643

“A high ranking official of the Vietnamese government said that within 10 months of 2009, the Cambodian-Vietnamese trade rose to US$1.04 billion, and the most import from Vietnam to Cambodia is petroleum, and the most export to Vietnam is rubber.

“The deputy director of the Asia – Pacific Market Department of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of Vietnam, Mr. Dao Ngoc Chuong [phonetic], said on 16 December 2009 while he attended a business and an investment forum in Cambodia that within 10 months of 2009, the Cambodian-Vietnamese trade increased to US$1.04 billion.

“According to Mr. Chuong, much of the trade is export from Vietnam to Cambodia, while imports of goods from Cambodia to Vietnam did not amount to much.

“He added that goods exported from Vietnam to Cambodia include petroleum, US$362 million; iron, US$104 million; machines and motor vehicle spare parts, US$32 million; plastic, US$31 million; food, US$30 million; textiles, US$25 million; sea food, US$14 million; paper, US$10 million; screws, US$8 million; ceramic, US$6.7 million; electric cables, US$6.2 million, and other products.

“The products that Cambodia exports to Vietnam are rubber, US$52 million; wood and wood products, US$31 million; tobacco, US$7.2 million; and scrap metal and products, US$1.5 million.

“The amount of the trade exchange between Cambodia and Vietnam increases every year. Practically, the figures show that it amounted to as much as US$1.64 billion in 2008, US$1.2 billion in 2007, and only US$935 million in 2006.” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5076, 18.12.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Friday, 18 December 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #365, 18.12.2009

  • The Confirmed Cases of A/H1N1 Increased to 513, and the Number of Deaths Rose to Six [in Cambodia]
  • Cambodia and Vietnam Signed Two Agreements [during the visit of the Secretary-General of the Communist Party of Vietnam – one agreement about cooperation in energy, industry, and mineral resources, and another about water way transport]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2127, 18.12.2009

  • [Svay Rieng] The Court Summoned [opposition party president] Sam Rainsy over the Removal of Temporary [Cambodian-Vietnamese] Border Markers [on 28 December 2009]
  • The Cambodian Prime Minister: Relations with the Thai Government Cannot Be Normalized [unless Bangkok’s current government is voted out of office]

Khmer Amatak, Vol.10, #699, 18.12.2009

  • [Prime Minister] Hun Sen Dared Not Ask [the Secretary-General of the Communist Party of Vietnam] Nông Đức Mạnh [Nong Duc Manh] to Solve the Human Rights Violations against the Khmer Kampuchea Krom People [in Vietnam]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #558, 18.12.2009

  • Civil Society [the Cambodian Independent Teachers’ Association and the Cambodian Free Trade Union of Workers] Asked the Khmer and the Siamese [Thai] Kings to Pardon Journalists [jailed in Cambodia] and Workers [imprisoned in Thailand]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6834, 18.12.2009

  • The First Secretary of the Thai Embassy Will Appear to Clarify Notes about Thaksin’s Plane [two or three days later – according to the spokesperson of the Thai government, Mr. Panitan Wattanayakon]
  • Twenty New Chain Saws Were Hidden in Second Hand Clothes [but were intercepted – Banteay Meanchey]
  • A Hundred and Six Cambodian Students Will Continue Their Studies in the Kingdom of Thailand in 2010 [Prime Minister Hun Sen said that the scholarships are granted by the Thai Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, a generous person, not from the Thai government]

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer Edition], Vol.1, #70, 18.12.2009

  • A Khmer Citizen Shot by Thai Soldiers [when he went to cut trees illegally in Thai territory] Is Waiting for His Death [in his home because he has no money for hospitalization – Oddar Meanchey]
  • The Ministry of Land Management Is Building 118 Offices Countrywide [spending $20,000 to $30,000 each to promote and ease the construction and real estate sectors]
  • Rich Countries Promised to Grant US$22 Billion in Copenhagen

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5076, 18.12.2009

  • Within 10 Months Cambodian-Vietnamese Trade Amounted to US$1.04 Billion
  • Cambodia and Vietnam Announced to Open Trade Crossings Facilities at the Mekong River
  • [Thai ousted and fugitive prime minister] Thaksin Shinawatra Promised to Attract Foreign Investors to Develop Tourism in Cambodia
  • Two Motorbikes Collided with Each Other while Overtaking a Car, Resulting in Three Deaths and Two Injured People [Kompong Cham]

Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.17, #1836, 18-20.12.2009

  • More Than 100 Countries [at UN Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva] Appealed to Cambodia to Implement Global Human Rights Policies

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UNIFEM: Poverty Is Making Cambodia Become a Base for Human Trafficking – Thursday, 17.12.2009

Posted on 17 December 2009. Filed under: Week 643 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 643

“The International Migrants Day was marked with a promotional meeting on the Legal Protection for Household Servants, organized at the Himawari Hotel by the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) and by the Ministry of Labor in the evening of 16 December 2009.

“A press conference focused on migration and human trafficking that are happening because of many factors, leading to trafficking when people migrate. The vulnerability of groups of people who migrate to seek ways necessary for their [economic] survival, and of those who are trafficked, is much alike. But there are significant differences between migration and trafficking. Many people fail to clearly distinguish between migration and trafficking. Police or immigration officials often do not have the operational criteria to make the proper judgments to distinguish between victims of trafficking and migrants. As a result, those who are victims of trafficking as a result of different crimes are mistaken for migrants, and the latter are arrested and repatriated.

“According to a report of UNIFEM and of the Ministry of Labor during the 3rd meeting of a working group of relevant ministries about migration on 9 December 2008, some open questions among many problems need urgent action. They require some more clarification about the reasons leading to human trafficking, among those who fight against human trafficking in Cambodia.

“Cambodia is a country that sends and receives migrating workers. 89,000 workers migrated to Thailand and 11,000 to Malaysia. These are the major destinations of Cambodian workers, and Cambodia also receives a large number of migrant workers: 10,000 from Vietnam and 55,000 from China, among other countries in the Greater Mekong Sub-Region.

“Cambodia is also used by criminals as a transit point for human trafficking to other countries, especially to the West.

“Even though there is no proof, networks of human trafficking in Asia are extending widely, relating from minor crimes to big organized crime networks. There is no clear estimation agreed upon globally to rightly reflect the number of people who are trafficked in Cambodia. It is difficult to have statistics because of the sensitivity and illegality of the trafficking business, and deficiencies relating to clear definitions of the word ‘trafficking.’

“According to the US Department of State, about 220,000 children and women were trafficked in Southeast Asia. ILO and the International Program on the Elimination of Child Labor [IPEC] estimated that 80,000 children and women were trafficked to Thailand for sexual exploitation since 1990. The highest number relates to people from Burma, followed by those from the Province of Yunan in China, and from Laos. There are 500 to 1,000 Cambodian children being used as beggars in Thailand.

“According to figures from the Department of Labor, by 30 November 2009, 22,222 workers – 19,586 women and 2,636 men – migrated to Malaysia to work as household servants, and 14,308 workers – 4,717 men and 9,591 women – migrated to Thailand. This shows that most migrants are Cambodian women.

“Migration is a problem that can lead to human trafficking: the trafficking of women for sexual exploitation is a type of organized crime that is increasing, because traffickers can earn high returns and have low hazards. Thousands of women are being trafficked from Asia.

“It should be remembered that Khmer citizens from various provinces and cities in Cambodia, who are unemployed, migrate to neighboring countries or to some other countries, to seek income to support their families’ livelihood. Unemployment in Cambodia is a factor urging them to decide to migrate and to leave their homes to seek paid employment elsewhere.” Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.17, #1835, 17.12.2009

Note:

PRESS RELEASE:

In order to continue the celebration of International Migrant’s Day (IMD) 18 December CARAM Cambodia initiated its celebration since 2006 participated by more than one thousand people with rally and parade and it is a fourth anniversary of International Migrant’ s Day celebration for this year (2009) in Cambodia and 19th anniversary of IMD celebration around the world and it is an opportunity:

  • to recognize the contributions made by millions of migrants to the development and well-being of so many countries in the world;
  • to demand an end to all forms of abuse and violence against migrants and their families and promote respect for their basic human rights;
  • to call on governments around the world to ratify the UN Convention on Migrant Workers;
  • to hold governments accountable with regards to the rights of migrants

A leading NGO-CARAM Cambodia will continue the celebration of International Migrant Day (IMD) 18 December 2009 in Cambodia with the following activities and objectives:

I. Radio Talk Show

  • Radio FM 106.5 from 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (18 December 2009);
  • Radio FM 102.5 from 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. (18 December 2009);
  • Radio FM 93.75 from 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. (18 December 2009);
  • Radio Free Asia from 7:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. (18 December 2009);
  • Radio FM 101.25 from 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. (16 December 2009)

II. Press Conference: Was on 16 December 2009

III. Message Delivery through Mobile Phone on IMD Celebration 18 December 2009

CARAM Cambodia will send a message entitled “International Migrant’s Day (IMD)” celebration to many people as we can to celebrate International Migrant Day 18 December 2009.

IV. Objective of International Migrant’s Day (IMD) 2009

The following is the objectives of IMD celebration this year:

  1. Celebrate the fourth anniversary of IMD in Kingdom of Cambodia initiated by CARAM Cambodia in cooperation with National AIDS Authority, Ministry of Labor and Vocational Training (MoLVT), local and international NGOs in Cambodia and participate in the celebration of 19th anniversary of International Migrant’s Day (IMD) around the world after UN General Assembly adopted the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families and after almost a decade of governmental negotiations and relentless advocacy by migrant communities around the world.
  2. Advocate people with decision making power, policy makers and stakeholders to support migration issues so that policies, laws and regulations are reviewed and adopted so as to promote and protect migrant workers’ rights;
  3. Increase public awareness on safe migration in an enabling environment to empower migrant workers to mitigate impacts and vulnerabilities of migrant workers and members of their families.

V. Remarks:

Everybody is encouraged to join Radio Talk Show Program “Together Promoting and Protecting Migrant Workers’ Rights” through call in show to be held in the coming days as mentioned in the above program and please help to disseminate a message “International Migrant’s Day (IMD) to friends, colleagues or whomever you know for the celebration of International Migrant’s Day (IMD) 18 December 2009 in Cambodia and around the world.

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Thursday, 17 December 2009

Areyathor, Vol.16, #1423, 17-18.12.2009

  • A 26-Year-Old Man Raped His 9-Year-Old Niece Nine Times [he was arrested – Phnom Penh]

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #364, 17.12.2009

  • Amnesty International Asked Cambodia Not to Send [22] Uighur People Back to Their Country [the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region in China]
  • [Two] Robbers Used Only Three Minutes to Rob Gold and Money of More Than US$90,000 [and escaped safely; Phnom Penh]
  • A Drunken Man Rapped His Eight-Year-Old Daughter Twice [he was arrested – Battambang]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2126, 17.12.2009

  • Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen: Thaksin Would Have Died [or been imprisoning], if There Was No Transfer of Flight [not to fly across Thailand]
  • Hungary Plans to Provide US$50 Million Loan for the Development of Cambodia
  • World Mate Organization Donated US$3 Million to the Cambodia Red Cross for a Period of Ten Year

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #557, 17.12.2009

  • [The Sam Rainsy Party Parliamentarian] Mr. Son Chhay Said that the Prime Minister Released the Thai Spy [though the court claimed it had enough evidence to put him in jail], so he Should Release Also the Khmer People Imprisoned over Land Disputes [who were jailed unjustly when just they protested over land grabbing]
  • The Leader of Khmer Kampuchea Krom Asked Top Leaders of the Country to Raise Khmer Kampuchea Krom Issues for Discussion with Nong Duc Manh, [a secretary general of the Communist Party of Vietnam, during his official visit in Cambodia]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6833, 17.12.2009

  • In Cambodia Private Sector Provides Many Jobs Up to 90%
  • The International Labor Organization (ILO) Shown that Economic Crisis Continues to Affect Garment Industry, Making 70 Factories were Closed [in Cambodia and 70,000 workers lost their jobs]
  • Red-Shirt Groups Supporting [Thai ousted and fugitive prime minister] Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra, Entered through the Poipet Border Crossing to Phnom Penh [to visit Mr. Thaksin]

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer Edition], Vol.1, #69, 17.12.2009

  • [The Former Khmer Rough top leaders], Nuon Chea and Ieng Sary, Were Accused of More Crimes of Genocide against Chams [Cambodian Muslims] and Vietnamese
  • The Asian Development Bank Voted Officially to Provide US$42 Million Loan [to Cambodia] to Repair Railroad

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5075, 17.12.2009

  • Samdech Dekchor Called Bangkok’s Comment over the Release of the Thai Spy Stupid [Thailand accused Cambodia of having no proper law by recording the spy’s conversation with the first secretary of the Thai Embassy via phone and said that the release is a farce; Prime Minister Hun Sen denied Cambodia recorded the conversation, but just has the note of the callings]
  • Mr. Thaksin Continues to Help Cambodia with Investment Sector and Tourism

Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.17, #1835, 17.12.2009

  • UNIFEM: Poverty Is Making Cambodia Become a Base for Human Trafficking

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Mr. Ny Chakriya: The Provision of Land to Companies Is Pushing Citizens to Face Serious Problems – Wednesday, 16.12.2009

Posted on 17 December 2009. Filed under: Week 643 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 643

“Citizens from eight provincial and city associations met at the Sunway Hotel, to express their opinions about the loss of their land to businesspeople and to some powerful officials, including to private companies that have received concession land from the government.

“Representatives of citizens came to protest, and to express their concerns about land grabbing committed by businesspeople and by some powerful officials.

“The head of the investigating unit of the Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association (ADHOC), Mr. Ny Chakriya, said that in view of the provision of only small economic land concessions to citizens, it is found that in 2008, the government provided tens of thousands of hectares of land to private companies as economic concessions, where 225,090 hectares were provided to 71 private companies as economic concession land. The provision of many hectares of land by the government every year might lead to a lack of land for citizens in the future. Moreover, the provision of economic concession land to different companies, without caring about the impact on citizens, is a big problem, resulting in a situation where citizens, who own little land for cultivation, to have no land, because 80% of the citizens are farmers in rural areas.

“Mr. Ny Chakriya added that forced evictions, where citizens lose ownership of land, victimize them easily. In 2008, there were 25 evictions involving 526 families or 66,095 citizens, who were evicted by force and did not receive any care or solution from state institutions that just use the words that there it is development. Tens of thousands of poor citizens live with fear with the development policy of the government, that frequently issues notifications to evict citizens from a district, a villages, or from a whole area, where they live legally, according to the land law, to leave their houses and land, accusing those citizens of setting up illegal settlements on state land, claiming that the land was taken for development through concessions, sale, or by leasing it to private companies. When such things happened, they ordered hundreds of armed forces and workers to help protect those companies, by shooting and using machinery to remove the houses of citizens, and to hit and to jail them, offering them little compensation, and vacating them to live in new locations that are remote and insecure and lack infrastructure.

“In the meantime, ADHOC has released a statement about land issues, in regions where the citizens were accused and arrested, because the courts serve the interests of businesspeople and of companies. ADHOC voiced regret and concerns over land disputes, that are not solved in some provinces and cities by the authorities, making thousands of citizens to encounter problems, and resulting in family separations, as their representatives were continually accused and arrested over land disputes in Cambodia.

“The statement of ADHOC says that according to its note about unsolved land disputes, there are not less than 200 cases each year, and not less than 250 citizens were accused by provincial and city courts, which produced fake evidence to sentence them to go to jail for years. At least there are 150 representatives of citizens and land activists imprisoned each year. The accusations and arrests of those citizens result from the incompetence to solve land disputes by the authorities at all levels who are biased, and did not provide justice to citizens. They did this to serve the interests of businesspeople and of companies, where some officials back them in each case.

“It should be noted that land disputes have occurred continually in Cambodia relating to poor citizens facing businesspeople and some powerful officials, so that citizens were evicted by force, and evacuated from their houses, to grab their land for businesspeople and for companies.” Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.17, #1834, 16.12.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #363, 16.12.2009

  • The Cambodian Economy Is to Grow by 3% to 4% in 2010, [according to the 34th annual conference of the Federation of ASEAN Economics Associations in Phnom Penh]
  • The Director of the Sambok Khmum Radio [Mr. Mam Sonando] Said He Will Enter Politics Again [if the Sam Rainsy Party and the Human Rights Party unite for the next term elections; he does not have the intention to form his own party]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2125, 16.12.2009

  • Sam Rainsy Party Parliamentarians Injured 15 Persons of the Authorities at the Border [after a clash – but the Sam Rainsy Party denied this information]
  • The Cambodia-Vietnam Insurance Company Operates with Cambodian Angkor Air [in providing flight insurance]
  • Climate Negotiators in Race against Time [the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon warns that negotiators face a race against time to prevent the meeting ending in failure, after developing nations staged a five-hour walk-out]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #556, 16.12.2009

  • World Bank: The Number of Poor People in Cambodia Increased by 3%, or More than 400,000, Adding to the Previous Number of Millions of People [because of the impact of the global economic crisis on the economy of Cambodia]
  • The Khmer Authorities’ Strange Procedures in Preventing Security for Mr. Thaksin in Cambodia [when he arrived at Phnom Penh to release the Thai spy, the Cambodian authorities allowed national and international journalists to take pictures and ask questiond without restrictions – but during his lecture on economics, his security was protected very strictly – journalists were not allowed to take pictures or even to listen to his lecture]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6832, 16.12.2009

  • A Beauty Contestant Winner Was Attacked with Acid to Destroy Her Beauty, [while she was in a hairdressing salon, by two unidentified men – Phnom Penh]
  • Twenty Four Kampuchea Krom People Seek Intervention from the Government to Live in Cambodia, after Thailand Sent Them Back

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer Edition], Vol.1, #68, 16.12.2009

  • Thaksin Shinawatra Promised to Develop the Cambodian Agriculture [by creating two model family farms], while Thailand Sets Conditions for Cambodia to End the Dispute [requesting to dismiss Mr. Thaksin as economic advisor and withdrawing the derogatory words insulting the Thai judicial system; but the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Cambodia said these conditions are nonsense]
  • China Warned the Refugee Organization [of the United Nations] in Cambodia Regarding [22] Uighur People [who are seeking asylum in Cambodia, saying, ‘It should not be a heaven for criminals’]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5074, 16.12.2009

  • The Chinese Company [KH Qinglong Mining Investment Group – phonetic] Presents an Investment Plan to Explore Minerals in Cambodia [on 2,000 square kilometers in Kampot and Preah Vihear]
  • Thaksin Shinawatra: Just by Exporting Rice Alone, Cambodia Could Earn US$1 Billion [he said during a meeting about agricultural development, at the government house, prepared by the Council for Development of Cambodia, suggesting to the Cambodian government to encourage the provision of loans to Khmer poor farmers to do cultivation, in order to maintain food security and especially to have surplus for export]
  • [About 400 people, including officials from the Ministry of Environment, representatives of civil society, and of other relevant institutions, students, and citizens:] Cambodia Demands that World Leaders Agree on a Fair-for-All Global Climate Agreement Soon

Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.17, #1834, 16.12.2009

  • Mr. Ny Chakriya: The Provision of Land to Companies Is Pushing Citizens to Face Serious Problems

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A Criminal Police Official Did Car Racing Contrary to His Role, and a Car Mechanic Criticized Him and Was Assaulted for It Seriously – Tuesday, 15.12.2009

Posted on 16 December 2009. Filed under: Week 643 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 643

Note:

Apologies for the delay – no electricity yesterday afternoon and evening.

Norbert Klein

“Phnom Penh: A deputy director of the lower criminal police office of the Phnom Penh Police was accused by citizens of using violence, and using a pistol to threaten and shoot at a car mechanic, at the Heng Heng car garage, located at House 12, Street 39, Srah Chak commune, Daun Penh district, Phnom Penh, at 7:35 p.m. on 13 December 2009.

“The victim, who was tortured, is Khat Dara – called Chhoam, male, 25. He stays at House 28, Street 216, in Khmuonh commune, Sen Sok district. He is a car mechanic of the Heng Heng car garage.

“Witnesses at the site said that relatives of the owner of the Heng Heng car garage, and mechanics were having dinner. Suddenly, two cars, one a dark green Corolla and the other one a golden ‘Shark’ Camry [popular name as the front part looks like a shark’s head], came racing each other; the drivers seemed heavily drunk. Some said that they raced in the center of Phnom Penh as if it were in a Hong Kong action movie. While the two cars went across the Heng Heng car garage compound, a mechanic, Khat Dara (who later became victimized) shouted to warn children not to cross the road, being afraid an accident might happen. The driver of the Corolla seemed to hear it and stepped on the brake, but was hit by the Shark Camry following from behind, that hit the back of the Corolla, damaging its bumper and number plate. Then the owner of the Corolla stepped out: he is known as the deputy director of the lower criminal police office of the Phnom Penh Police, his nick name is Tivea 06 [‘Anniversary 06’] while the owner of the Shark Camry is a military police official.

“After he came out of his car, strongly smelling of wine, the police officer Tivea 06 shouted, ‘Who shouted at me?’ and the mechanic, Khat Dara, called Chhoam, walked towards this police official to tell him that he had no intention to shout at him, but he just warned the children not to cross the road. In response, Mr. Tivea 06 pulled his two inch pistol, to hit the victim on the head many times, then he kicked the victim very hard, which he should not do, as he is a police official who has to enforce the law. Next, Mr. Tivea 06 and his partner, known as a military police official, dragged the victim into the Chen Dom Dek Pagoda, where he continued to hit him all over, and even tried to shot at him twice, but it was fortunate that the gun did not work.

“A Witness added that as Mr. Tivea 06 got angry because his gun did not work, he then called his fellow police through a walkie-talkie, to come with three motorbikes to the site to handcuff and to take the victim to the lower criminal police office of the Phnom Penh Police.

“A Phnom Penh police official said that when the victim arrived at that station, Mr. Tivea 06 remained angry, and used an electric wire to shock the victim, so that he fainted. After that, probably because the cruel torture was heard by a brigadier of the Phnom Penh Police, Mr. Tivea ordered his fellow police to use a towel to wipe the blood from the victim’s face, and to change his clothes, and to send him by car to the Calmette Hospital.

“Citizens who witnessed the event condemned Mr. Tivea 06, now the deputy director of the Phnom Penh lower criminal police office, saying that he should not be a police official who has to enforce the law. If he is good at assaulting innocent citizen like this, he should go to Preah Vihear, because the government is seeking strong persons to protect the border from many enemies! The family of the victim, of Khat Dara, will lodge a complaint at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court to find justice. Citizens at the site of the event shouted loudly that the deputy director of the Phnom Penh lower criminal police office, Mr. Tivea 06, should be a model for citizens in obeying and implementing the law, but he is a cruel person, who actively broke the law, and he should not be allowed to keep on working, as he is such bad model.

Koh Santepheap tried to ask for clarification from Major Neang Sokna, called Tivea 06, in the evening of 13 December 2009, but could not reach him.” Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6831, 15.12.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #362, 15.12.2009

  • The Siamese [Thai] Spy Was Freed, while [the Thai ousted and now fugitive prime minister] Thaksin Shinawatra Came to Visit Hun Sen
  • The First Secretary-General of the Communist Party of Vietnam [Mr. Nông Đức Mạnh – Nong Duc Manh], Will Visit Cambodia on 17 December 2009 [in response to an invitation from the King]
  • Robbers Gunned Down the Wife of a Village Chief, and Took Away Riel 17 Million Safely [approx. US$4,250 – Pursat]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2124, 15.12.2009

  • [The Minister of Industry, Mines, and Energy] Suy Sem: In Late 2011, Electricity Costs in Cambodia Will Be Cheaper [because of the Kamchay hydro-electric dam which will produce 193 megawatts when it operates, and in addition, 200 megawatts from Vietnam will have been connected]

Khmer Amatak, Vol.10, #696, 15.12.2009

  • The Court Requires Sam Rainsy [who is now abroad], to Appear over an Accusation of Destruction of State Property [for removing Cambodian-Vietnamese temporary border makers], and for Creating a Nationalist Incitement

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #555, 15.12.2009

  • Sam Rainsy Party Parliamentarians Arrived at the Border, and Found the Fact that Farmers Had Lost Some of Their Rice Fields [to Vietnam]; Soldiers and Police Armed with Shields and Electric Batons Blocked the Way of the Parliamentarians [to check the temporary border markers]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6831, 15.12.2009

  • A Criminal Police Official Did Car Racing Contrary to His Role, and a Car Mechanic Criticized Him and Was Assaulted for It Seriously
  • The Construction of a Water Pumping Station [in Svay Pak commune, Russey Keo district], Starts, so that the North of Phnom Penh Should No Longer be Flooded [it can pump 50.4 cubic meters per hour, and the construction will be finished within 9 months]

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer Edition], Vol.1, #67, 15.12.2009

  • The Authorities Announced Not to Issue Land Ownership Titles for Some Regions [in Phnom Penh: seven regions in the Tonle Basak commune, Chamkar Mon district, claming that those regions are “complex” – no further explanation]
  • In 2010 Cambodia Will Yield 7.3 Million Tonnes for Paddy Rice, Where 3.2 Million Tonnes Can Be Exported [according to the Ministry of Agriculture]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5073, 15.12.2009

  • The Thai Spy Was Released and Returned to Bangkok after Directly Receiving the Letter of Pardon from Samdech Dekchor [Hun Sen at his resident]
  • A Soldier Truck Loaded with Wood Hit People and Overturned Suddenly, Killing Two and Injuring More Than 10 [Siem Reap]
  • The United States Donated a Set of Devices to Scan for Radioactivity, Worth US$3 Million, to the Cambodian Government
  • The Italian Prime Minister’s Nose and Teeth Were Broken because a Miniature Replica of the Milan Cathedral was thrown at him by a man [who was then detained]

Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.17, #1833, 15.12.2009

  • The Authorities Failed to Prevent Citizens and Opposition Party Parliamentarians to Check the Border Markers [in Svay Rieng – they went around the road blocks]

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Thaksin Shinawatra and Chavalit Yongchaiyudh Come Together to Receive the Thai Spy Today – Monday 14.12.2009

Posted on 15 December 2009. Filed under: Week 643 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 643

“Phnom Penh: The Thai former prime minister, Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra, and the Puea Thai Party president, Mr. Chavalit Yongchaiyudh, will come together to receive the Thai spy Siwarak Chothipong at the Prey Sar Prison today [13 December 2009]. This is according to a high ranking official of the Royal Government.

“This official said that the information about the arrival of Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra will be hidden to some extent. But Mr. Chavalit Yongchaiyudh arrived at Cambodia since yesterday morning on 13 December 2009.

“The spokesperson of the Royal Government, Mr. Khieu Kanharith, spoke to Kampuchea Thmey, as saying that Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra will really come to Cambodia to receive the Thai spy who will be released on Monday. But Mr. Khieu Kanharith did not specify the actual date, but just said that Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra will arrive on 12 or 13 December 2009. As soon as Mr. Thaksin arrives at Cambodia, he will go to meet the Thai spy in the Prey Sar Prison, to visit him with his mother.

“Mr. Khieu Kanharith added that after Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra has met the Thai man, he will meet with Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen on Monday. Then he will meet economists at the Ministry of Economy and Finance like before.

“Mr. Khieu Kanharith stressed the arrival of Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra is not a secret, because he already became an important official of Cambodia. As an economic advisor, Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra might do some work abroad to contact with investors to come to invest in Cambodia.

“As for the Thai government of Mr. Abhisit Vijjajiva, after receiving the information about Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra, that he comes to visit Cambodia again, he is seeking to send a diplomatic note again, asking Cambodia to extradite Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra, according to AFP.

“Mr. Abhisit Vijjajiva told this news agency that even though the previous request for extradition was rejected by the Cambodian government, his government will not give up sending a request again.

“A high raking official of Cambodia said that what we decided previously is not different from now, because Cambodia does not like twisting words like the Thai government. Thus, Cambodia will not care about any requests of the Thai government to extradite Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra.

“Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra said on the Internet by Twitter on Saturday that he plans to visit three countries in Asia. He said the visit to those countries would take seven to eight days. But he did not specify those countries’ names.

“According to a high ranking official of the Council of Ministers, when Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra arrives, he will go to meet the Thai spy at the Prey Sar Prison at 4:30 p.m. on 13 December 2009, and that spy will be released from prison on 14 December 2009.

“The official added that the president of the Puea Thai Party, Mr. Chavalit Yongchaiyudh, will accompany Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra. According to the official, Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra and Mr. Chavalit Yongchaiyudh expressed their appreciation towards the head of the Cambodian government, especially King Norodom Sihamoni, who pardoned the Thai national.” Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2123, 13-14.12.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Monday, 14 December 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #361, 13-14.12.2009

  • Two Cooks Were Attacked [in two separate cases]; One Was Shot Dead and the Other One Was Stabbed into One of His Eyes [perpetrators are not yet identified – Phnom Penh]
  • Three People Died and Two Were Seriously Injured, in a Traffic Accident on National Road 5 [two cars cashed into each other – Phnom Penh]
  • The Ministry of Women’s Affairs Celebrated the National Day against Human Trafficking on 12 December

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2123, 13-14.12.2009

  • Thaksin Shinawatra and Chavalit Come to Receive the Thai Spy Today
  • An Official of the Ministry of Interior: The Sam Rainsy Party Can Visit, but Cannot Remove Border Markers [in Svay Rieng]
  • [The Minister of Foreign Affairs] Mr. Hor Namhong: This Year Cambodia Can Cultivate Much Paddy Rice, but there Is a Lack of Milling Machines to Mill Paddy Rice for Export

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #554, 13-14.12.2009

  • The Sam Rainsy Party Continues to Seek Thumbprints from Citizens for Asking the King to Deliver Immunity to Mr. Sam Rainsy [his immunity was suspended for removing border markers]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6830, 14.12.2009

  • The Court: Sam Rainsy and His Accomplices, Are Accused of Removing the Cambodian-Vietnam Temporary Border Markers, and Inciting [racial] Discrimination [Svay Rieng]

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer Edition], Vol.1, #66, 14.12.2009

  • The Thai Spy Will Be Released This Morning under the Presidency of Mr. Hun Sen and Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra
  • Police Arrested 968 Demonstrators in Copenhagen [among 30,000, for throwing bricks and breaking windows during demonstrations about global climate change – Denmark]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5072, 13-14.12.2009

  • [Thai Prime Minister] Abhisit Vijjajiva Welcomes to Release [of the Thai engineer], but the Thai Opposition Party [Puea Thai Party], Asked Him and [the Minister of Foreign Affairs] Kasit Piromya to Thank [Prime Minister], Hun Sen
  • An Agricultural Official: In 2009 and 2010, Cambodia Will Have More Than Three Million Tonnes of Paddy Rice [compared to last year, there were also about three million tonnes]

Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.17, #1832, 14.12.2009

  • The FBI Report on the Grenade Attack on 30 March 1997 Was Released [it was quoted from The Cambodia Daily – 9/10/11 December 2009 – as saying, ‘Investigators believed in 1997 that they had uncovered evidence to implicate security forces loyal to the Cambodian People’s Party in the grenade attack on an opposition rally in Phnom Penh that year, which killed at least 16 people.’]

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