A High Ranking Official of the Government Criticizes that Foreign Officials Interrupt the Process of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal – Thursday, 12.3.2009

Posted on 15 March 2009. Filed under: Week 603 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 603

Apologies for the delays in publishing – due to my international travel. I try to catch up as soon as possible.

Norbert Klein

“A high-ranking official of the Cambodian government stated on Tuesday that the Khmer Rouge Tribunal is at present being interrupted and hindered by some foreign officials. The Minister of Information and government spokesperson, Mr. Khieu Kanharith, criticized that some foreign officials are making money rather than coming to seek justice for Khmer citizens. The government spokesperson reprimanded them, saying, ‘One case has not yet been finished, and they raise another case. This group wants to extend the time of the court proceedings for their salaries… Many of them try to oppose some of the court actions, so that it cannot proceed. Therefore, we think carefully about all elements of our Article 46, and nobody can block this court.’

“Moreover, Minister of Information Khieu Kanharith warned that the Cambodian side might move ahead alone, if foreign officials continue to interrupt the process of seeking justice. He said, ‘We have many elements to consider. If no one does it, we do it. The government has money to do it, but we may do it alone, because the government cannot afford tens of thousands of dollars for the salaries for foreign officials. According to Article 46, as a last resort, the Cambodian government can do it alone, but first, we need to work with the United Nations and then with countries that are members of the United Nations. Then we work with partner countries, and if the third way cannot work, the forth way is that Cambodia will proceed alone.’

Note:

Further information about the history and some arrangements for the Khmer Rouge Tribunal:

Cambodia’s Position on the Khmer Rouge Tribunal

Presentation by His Excellency Sok An, Senior Minister, Minister in Charge of the Office of the Council of Ministers, President of the Task Force for Cooperation with Foreign Legal Experts and Preparation of the Proceedings for the Trial of Senior Khmer Rouge Leaders, to the Stockholm International Forum Truth, Justice and Reconciliation, 23-24 April 2002

Your Excellencies, Diplomatic Representatives and Participants in this third Stockholm International Forum .

Firstly, I would like to thank the Swedish government for making it possible for the Cambodian delegation to participate in this Forum, giving us the valuable chance to meet and exchange views with scholars, diplomats and legal experts from around the world. Learning from others’ experiences and sharing our own is a precious opportunity for us…

The Paris Peace Agreements of 1991 accorded political legitimacy to the Khmer Rouge and, when UNTAC left Cambodia in 1993, the new coalition government had to cope with the Khmer Rouge continuing policy of civil war and destabilization. We then launched a multifaceted strategy involving political, legal, economic and military campaigns, including the 1994 Legislation to Outlaw the Khmer Rouge, and efforts to encourage its members to defect and split. What Prime Minister Hun Sen has described as a “win-win” policy that has formed the bedrock of the political platform of the Royal Government of Cambodia involves five facets: “divide, isolate, finish, integrate, and develop” in which the Khmer Rouge political and military structure was ended, but those Khmer Rouge who defected were assured of their physical safety and survival, the right to work and to carry out their professions, and the security of their property…

The fifth compromise arose because the United Nations wanted the Law explicitly to exclude the possibility of any amnesty or pardon for those who may be indicted or convicted. According to our 1993 Constitution, the King has the right to give amnesty and pardon and we did not wish this law to contradict our Constitution. As a compromise we agreed to state in the law that the Royal Government of Cambodia will not request the King to grant any amnesty or pardon. Our Prime Minister and I have repeatedly stated that no one is above the law, and it will be entirely up to the Extraordinary Chambers to decide who shall be indicted or convicted…

But we cannot wait forever. Article 46 of our Law makes perfectly clear that, while primacy is given to United Nations participation in the process, if it pulls out, Cambodia is entitled to go ahead to establish the Extraordinary Chambers without the United Nations, hopefully with the participation and support of individual member states and foreign legal personalities, or in the last resort to carry out the trial entirely on its own.

[Bold face highlighting added during editing]

“It should be noted that recently, the foreign co-prosecutor of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, Mr. Robert Petit, had asked to open investigations on more former Khmer Rouge leaders, besides the five former Khmer Rouge leaders already detained in the special detention facility of the tribunal, waiting for hearings. However, the above request of Mr. Robert Petit was strongly opposed by the Cambodian co-prosecutor, Ms. Chea Leang, by strongly raising different reasons . [The US based organization] Human Rights Watch criticized the disagreement between Ms. Chea Leang and Mr. Robert Petit on his request, saying that this is political interference, raising the accusation that there is intervention by the Cambodian government.

“The investigating judges of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal have not yet made a decision after the request of Mr. Robert Petit to investigate additional former Khmer Rouge leaders. In the meantime, Khmer citizens inside and outside of the country requested the investigation of more former Khmer Rouge leaders, in order to seek justice for the victims of the Killing Fields regime. It is regretted that high ranking officials of the Cambodian government accused foreign officials of the Khmer Rouge tribunal of interrupting the process by requesting to hear more former Khmer Rouge leaders, to be detained at the special detention facility of the tribunal.

“On the other hand, last week, the Khmer Rouge Tribunal amended 27 points of its internal regulations, but did not consider any request by non-government organizations. This results in further criticism of the hybrid tribunal by non-government organizations, for trying to conceal information, related to the process of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal. Moreover, the fact that the Khmer Rouge Tribunal did not consider the requests by non-government organizations shows that the special tribunal is under strong political influence.

“It should be noted that in late 2008, many organizations submitted detailed requests for changes in the internal regulations of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal. Those organizations had said that their requests will lead to more openness: like allowing the public to attend, when those who are arrested are presented for the first time, and like the request to publish information about decisions how differences of opinion between prosecutors and investigating judges in the tribunal were solved. But during the plenary session of the investigating judges of the tribunal last week, these requests by non-government organizations were not raised for discussions.

“In a joint request by five non-government organizations, including the Center for Social Development – CSD, the Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association – ADHOC, and the Cambodian Open Society Justice Initiative, they ask for solutions for apparent problems of interpretation between the Agreement to establish the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia, with the United Nations signed in 2003 with the Cambodian government, and the internal regulations of the tribunal. This request was not taken up for discussion during the plenary session of the judges of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, while an official hearing of Kaing Gek Iev, called Duch, will be held in late March. This problem creates distrust among national and international observers of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, while corruption allegations at the tribunal are not yet clarified.

“A former US ambassador in charge of war crimes, and an important negotiator to establish the tribunal, Mr. David Scheffer [as ambassador, he participated in the creation of the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, of the Special Court for Sierra Leone, and of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia], said Tuesday that it was not sure whether policy makers of this tribunal consider to publish such decisions or not. Mr. David Scheffer wrote in an email that it is important that they should not conclude and express views in writing about such sensitive points controversial among prosecutors. He added that the 2003 Agreement should be consulted.

“Some of those who observe the Khmer Rouge Tribunal since its beginning said that this tribunal cannot help Khmer citizens, who have been waiting for justice for more than 30 years, to see the real light of justice, because since it was created, the hybrid tribunal, established together with the United Nations, had to encounter various obstacles, especially corruption allegations, which almost makes this tribunal to lose its value. In addition, attacks between Cambodian government officials and foreign officials in the Khmer Rouge Tribunal lead to further postponement the hearings of former Khmer Rouge leaders.

“Some analysts criticized that both the United Nations and the Cambodian government seem not to have the will to prosecute the former Khmer Rouge leaders soon, and to provide justice to the victims who lost their lives during the Killing Fields regime. That is why the recent hearing of Duch on 17-18 February proceeded in a way which was useless [no explanation given why this newspaper comes to this opinion], and then the Cambodian side announced that it will completely run out of money in March. This announcement from the Cambodian side is a shame, since so far, not any Khmer leader has been prosecuted, while millions of dollars were already spent wastefully.

“Anyway, Khmer citizens inside and outside of the country want the hearings of former Khmer Rouge leaders to be conducted soon, to find out who created the Khmer Rouge, and to reveal the reasons that led to the crimes where more than 1.7 million Khmer citizens were killed during the Killing Fields regime.” Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.16, #3709, 12.3.2008

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Thursday, 12 March 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #137, 11.3.2009

  • Mr. Hor Namhong Asks the United Nations to Help Street Children
  • [Former Microsoft Corporation chief executive officer] Bill Gates’ Foundation Will Grant Aid to Develop Impoverished Communities in Phnom Penh [according to Phnom Penh Deputy Governor Man Chhoeun]
  • Samdech Dekchor [Hun Sen]: The Government Will Strengthen the Education Sector
  • The National Bank of Cambodia Points to the Downturn of Economic Growth in Cambodia in 2008 [which declined to 7.9%]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #362, 12.3.2009

  • [A parliamentarian of the Sam Rainsy Party] Yim Sovann: The Government Must Acknowledge the Serious Situation because of the Downturn of Cambodia’s Economic Growth

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #1895, 12.3.2009

  • The Head of the Royal Government of Cambodia Criticizes Protectionist Policies [of other countris because they make some Least Developed Countries to face difficulties to export goods]
  • UNICEF Provides More Than US$6 Million for the Development of the Educational Sector of Cambodia
  • Vietnam [through a visiting commercial delegation] Seeks Development Partners in Cambodia
  • Dalai Lama: Tibet under Chinese Control Is Like Hell on the Earth [“March 10th Statement of H.H. the Dalai Lama” and a response by the People’s Daily Online: “Dalai Lama’s utter distortion of Tibet history”]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6600, 12.3.2009

  • Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech [Hun Sen] Warns that Those Who Continue Running Football Betting Will Be Sued at the Court

Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.16, #3709, 12.3.2008

  • A High Ranking Official of the Government Criticizes that Foreign Officials Interrupt the Process of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #4843, 12.3.2009

  • Cambodia Allows [Laotian, Thai, and Vietnamese] People Who Hold Border Passports to Stay [in Cambodia] for One Week
  • A Man Sleeping in the Field to Guard Paddy Rice Was Hit and Killed, and a Small Tractor and 27 Bags of Paddy Rice Were Stolen [police are seeking the culprits – Bavel, Battambang]

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The King Sends a Letter to Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen – Saturday, 28.2.2009

Posted on 1 March 2009. Filed under: Week 601 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 601

“Preah Karuna Preah Bat Samdech Preah Boromneath Norodom Sihamoni, the King of the Kingdom of Cambodia, sent a letter with some documents to Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen, the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, asking him to check the cutting down of trees and of the forest clearance to claim land ownership, as the report of the president of a Natural Resource Observation and Protection Organization of Cambodia, Mr. Chea Hean, said, in order that Samdech Dekchor takes action according to the law.

“The letter signed by Preah Karuna Samdech Preah Boromneath Norodom Sihamoni dated 26 February 2009 to Samdech Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen, the head of the government, says that he received a letter dated 24 February 2009, as well as some documents from a Natural Resource Observation and Protection Organization of Cambodia, signed by Mr. Chea Hean, asking the King to intervene with Samdech Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen, regarding collusion of the authorities and of certain officials of the Oral Mountain Animal Refuge, and the authorities in Kiri Sakor district in Koh Kong to cut down trees and to clear forest, to take state land in national natural reserves which are protected by Royal Decree.

“Relating to the letter of the Khmer King, asking Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen to intervene, we could not contact the cabinet of the Prime Minister to know whether this letter has arrived there or not, and whether the King’s letter to Samdech Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor was sent while Samdech Dekchor had already left Cambodia to Thailand to attend the 14th ASEAN summit in Hua Hin, and if so, it is expected that Samdech will become aware of this problem only after returning to the country.

“The writer of the letter, Mr. Chea Hean, said on 27 February 2009 that he and his officials are pleased that the letter was sent to Samdech Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen. This provides confidence from His Majesty for the report and for some documents which this organization had sent to him, signed on 26 February 2009 and send to Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen, to report to him about the cutting down of trees, and the clearing of forest, to claim land for private ownership, conducted by officials who are directors of the Oral Mountain Animal Refuge in Kompong Speu, and of the Botum Sakor National Park in Kiri Sakor district in Koh Kong.

“It should be recalled that the cutting down of trees in the Oral Mountain Animal Refuge had occurred repeatedly since 2002, with collusion between the director of the Animal Refuge, Mr. Chhun Chhea Heng, and the Oral district police chief, Mr. Dos Sim, as well as district governors and village and commune chiefs. The cutting down of trees in the Botum Sakor National Park, which is protected by Royal Decree, is conducted by the Botum Sakor district police chief, Mr. Touch Sovannarith, who hires citizens to clear forest – and even though the director of the Botum Sakor National Park prohibits it, the activities of the police chief Touch Sovannarith cannot be stopped.” Khmer Aphivaot Sethakech, Vol. 7, #352, 28-2.2.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Saturday, 28 February 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #127, 28.2.2009

  • Sam Rainsy Agrees to Pay Riel 10 Million [approx. US$2,500] to the National Election Committee
  • The Government Is Not Afraid of a Withdrawal of the United Nations from the Khmer Rouge Tribunal
  • The European Community Promises to Provide Approximately US$50 Million per Year from 2009 to 2012
  • Civil Society Organizations: Closing Gambling Sites Makes Some People Unemployed, but the Whole Society Is Better
  • [The Minister of Economy and Finance] Deputy Prime Minister Keat Chhon Met with the Deputy President of the National Assembly of France [Mr. Jean-Marie Le Guen, to strengthen cooperation between both countries]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #1885, 28.2.2009

  • Rohingya Boat People Will Be Sent Back from Thailand to Burma [said Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva]

Khmer Aphivaot Sethakech, Vol. 7, #352, 28-2.2.2009

  • The King Sends a Letter to Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen
  • Government Official [Mr. Khieu Kanharith, Minister of Information and government spokesperson] Denies that There Were Serious Human Rights Violations as Claimed in the Report of the US Department of State
  • World Federation of Free Trade Unions Invites the Presidents of the Trade Union of Workers of the Kingdom of Cambodia to Visit Greece to Exchange Experiences

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6590, 28-1.2.2009

  • [Former Khmer Rouge leader] Khiev Samphan’s Hearing Was Suspended when There Was No Foreign Co-Lawyer Was Present [Mr. Jacques Vergès was absent, because a relative had had a traffic accident in Paris]

Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.16, #3699, 28-1.2.2009

  • The Open Justice Initiative Criticizes the United Nations for Not Taking Action against Corruption at the Khmer Rouge Tribunal

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #4833, 28.2.2009

  • Between 8,000 and 9,000 People Became Unemployed after the Operation of Slot Machines and of Football Betting [at Cambosix] Was Terminated
  • Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen Goes to Attend the 14th ASEAN Summit in Hua Hin in Thailand
  • Japan International Cooperation Agency Begins a Study for the Construction of a Section of National Road 1 and of the Neak Loeang Bridge
  • The IMF Tells Cambodia to Strengthen Commercial Banks [so that they are able to provide loans to other sectors]
    Vietnam and China Reject the Human Rights Reports of the United States

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United States Department of State Released Report on Human Rights Violation Committed by Armed Forces against Citizens – Friday, 27.2.2009

Posted on 28 February 2009. Filed under: Week 601 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 601

“Businesspeople and powerful officials used courts and armed forces such as police, soldiers, and military police to evict citizens from their land and their houses without proper compensation.

“The US Department of State released the 2008 report about many cases of human rights abuses in Cambodia, caused by armed forces to evict citizens from their houses to grab their land illegally. The report described also tortures against suspects and prisoners at prisons, and the arrests of citizens and extrajudicial killings, as well as the restriction of the freedom of expression.

“The report of the US Department of State continued that most armed forces that used violence are from the military and the police, and they are not prosecuted for what they did.

“The report added that there were 40 cases of extrajudicial killings, where 16 cases were committed by police and 15 cases by military. Frequently, tortures at prisons become normal to force to obtain answers.

“The report of the US Department of State concluded that while corruption is still widespread, land disputes and evictions of citizens from their houses are still a major problems.

“The Minister of Information and government spokesperson, H.E. Khieu Kanharith, could not be reached for comment on 26 February 2009 after the annual report was released by the US Department of State, stating that armed forces were leading the violation of human rights and are involved in extrajudicial killings in Cambodia, where 40 such cases happened.

“Recently, civil society organizations in Cambodia were involved in drafting legislation relating to the establishment of an ASEAN Human Rights Committee and an independent human rights committee in Cambodia, with fund allocated by the National Assembly every year for this task.

“Civil society officials said that the report of the US Department of State about the situation of human rights violations, evictions of citizens, and corruption occurring in Cambodia is true, especially about the extrajudicial killings, and about some perpetrators who are not brought to be prosecuted according to the law.

“Such human rights violations show a lack of efforts by the government that lets a culture of impunity exist in Cambodia. If such human rights violations still continue to happen, that means that citizens cannot protect their rights if human rights violations happen, especially the right to freedom of expression and the right to demonstrate against violations of any law.” Khmer Aphivaot Sethakech, Vol. 7, #351, 27.2.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Friday, 27 February 2009

Cheat Khmer, Vol.1, #27, 27-1.2.2009

  • Mr. Sam Rainsy: “If the King Grants an Amnesty in a Fine Case [with a fine of Riel 10 million, approx. US$2,500, charged by the National Election Committee], I Will Donate this Amount to the Kuntheak Bopha Hospital”

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #126, 27.2.2009

  • The Permanent Committee of the National Assembly Decided to Suspend Mr. Sam Rainsy’s Immunity
  • Khmer Citizens Support the Government’s Action to Close the Football Betting and Slot Machines [of Cambosix, a big betting and gambling company with many branches in Cambodia, is now closed]
  • Two Students Who Hit a Teacher Are Jailed for Six Months and Ordered to Pay US$2,000 Compensation [Phnom Penh]
  • [The president of the Free Trade Union of Workers of the Kingdom of Cambodia] Chea Mony: [the former Phnom Penh police chief, who is involved in many murder cases] Heng Pov Might Disclose the Mystery behind the Murder of His Older Brother Chea Vichea

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #1884, 27.2.2009

  • [The Minister of Foreign Affairs] Goes to Attend the ASEAN Summit in Hua Hin in Thailand [scheduled to be held from 27 February to 1 March 2009]
  • Three Japanese Naval Ships Visit Cambodia
  • The Club of Cambodian Journalists Ask Journalists to Adhere to the Code of Conduct Firmly

Khmer Aphivaot Sethakech, Vol. 7, #351, 27.2.2009

  • United States Department of State Released Report on Human Rights Violation Committed by Armed Forces against Citizens

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6589, 27.2.2009

  • The Tribunal Suspends the Hearing of the Complaint, Asking to Be Out of Bail for the Suspect Ieng Sary due to Health Problem
  • 18 Companies Receive Economic Concession Land of Nearly 80,000 Hectares, while 1,267 Farmers’ Families Lack Land for Cultivation in Kompong Thom
  • Billionaire Bill Gates Grants US$100 Million to Assist Research on AIDS
  • Police Against Human Trafficking and Protecting Minors Arrest an American Man in Siem Reap [for debauchery involving children]

Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.16, #3698, 27.2.2009

  • Sam Rainsy Asks Swiss Banks to Check Dirty Money of High-Ranking Khmer Officials Deposited There

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #4832, 27.2.2009

  • America Says that the Human Rights Situation in Cambodia Is Not Yet Good
  • Cambodia Encourages the European Community to Sign an Aid Project Worth Euro 77 Million [approx. US$98 million – about the provision of finance for basic studies, commercial governance, and human rights to be implemented from 2007 to 2010]
  • 2010-2012 Public Investment Program Needs Capital of US$2.8 Billion
  • 70,000 Cambodian People Die of Smoking Cigarettes per Year [according to a research by the World Health Organization and by the Ministry of Health of Cambodia]

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Friday, 19.9.2008: The United States Expects that the Khmer Rouge Tribunal Will No Longer Be Involved in a Corruption Scandal

Posted on 20 September 2008. Filed under: Week 578 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 578

“The United States expects that the Khmer Rouge Tribunal will no longer be involved in a corruption scandal in the future, after the US pledged to grant US$1.8 million to the mixed tribunal to seek justice for the victims who died during the Killing Field regime. This information is based on statements of the spokesperson of the US Department of State Sean McCormack during a press conference in Washington on Tuesday, 16 September 2008 [see the full text at the end].

“Mr. Sean McCormack stated, ‘We believe that the court is now capable of meeting international standards of justice, and our decision at this time to identify funds reflects our belief that the court has the capacity to respond effectively and appropriately to these allegations.’ He said that the Khmer Rouge Tribunal still has more to do, the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia have made significant strides to overcome international concerns about corruption, mismanagement, and political influence, including adding a new international deputy administrator from the United Nations side, strengthening management practices, and establishing procedures to deal with allegations of wrongdoing.

“It should be remembered that previously, employees of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal had repeatedly raised the problem of kickbacks in exchange for getting employed, but it was never officially announced that there were any perpetrators or who they are. As a result of suspicion, the UN Development Program office had suspended more than US$300,000 for a period of time, suspending the payment of salaries for Khmer staff in July. Then, the head of the Khmer Staff Department was removed from his position, as a big corruption leader at the Khmer side of the court, but it seems that nobody really dares to touch him.

“The international community and many donor countries, especially the United States, hesitated to grant more funds to the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, because of the [not yet clarified allegations of a] corruption scandal. However, the United States, through its Deputy Secretary of State, Mr. John Negroponte, who visited Cambodia recently, pledged to grant US$1.8 million to the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, so that it can proceed smoothly. Mr. Sean McCormack added that the US Department of State had already shared information about this attempt to help Cambodia to try the former Khmer Rouge leaders.

“Mr. Reach Sambath, the spokesperson of the [Cambodian section of the] Khmer Rouge Tribunal, said that the granting of US funds is mainly a political sign, and the tribunal welcomes this decision by the United States as a correct one. He went on to say that although this grant is small, it is better than nothing, and though it comes late, it is better than nothing. Mr. Reach Sambath boasted that the Khmer Rouge Tribunal is strongly committed and has created clear plans to deal with corruption, like by the nomination of two ethics monitoring officials, and the reassignment away of the director of personnel.

“This spokesperson hinted that the trial of Kang Kek Iev – called Duch, the former Tuol Sleng Prison chief – might happen in October or in November, after some procedural problems between the co-investigating judges and the co-prosecutors will have been clarified. Some officials of civil society organizations and observers are keenly observing this problem, because they want to see that the trial of the suspects to happens soon, in order to find justice for the victims. However, if there is more delay, the funds from the United States will be spent wastefully, and the Khmer citizens still do not see the light of justice.

“The Khmer Rouge Tribunal, which has suffered from allegations of a corruption scandal, needs approximately US$50 million in addition, to cover expenses until 2010, out of which approximately US$10 million are to come from the Cambodian side, and approximately US$40 million are needed from the United Nations. At present, many observers are waiting to see whether the trial – which is planed to take place this late October – of Khiev Samphan, who had filed an appeal to be temporarily released from detention, will proceed smoothly or not. If the trial of Khiev Samphan in October faces complications and is delayed again, like it happened already on 23 April 2008, it is not easy for the tribunal to seek additional millions of dollars.

“Although the US government announced to ask for parliamentary approval for a grant of US$1.8 million to the [UN, not the Cambodian section of the] Khmer Rouge Tribunal budget during the recent visit by the US Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte, some observers of the processes of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal do not expect that this mixed tribunal can find justice for the victims who were killed during the killing filed regime, because previously, the Khmer Rouge Tribunal had spent already millions of dollars wastefully, while Khmer citizens in general have been waiting for justice nearly 30 years. Furthermore, irregularities and a corruption scandal at the Khmer Rouge Tribunal have not yet been clarified.

“Khmer citizens inside of the country and abroad want that the trial of former Khmer Rouge leaders should occur soon, as long as they are still alive, so that the real reasons that led to the killing of more than 1.7 million people during their time in power from 1975 to early January 1979 can be revealed. Therefore, if there is further delay, those former Khmer Rouge leaders might die before the trial takes place, because already at present, they became older, and some of them had been suffering from serious illness and had often been sent to Calmette Hospital.” Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3569, 19.9.2008

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Friday, 19 September 2008


Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1750, 19.9.2008

  • Samdech Hun Sen and Samdech Krom Preah [Norodom Ranariddh] Extend Friendly Wishes to Each Other; Amnesty Letter for Samdech Krom Preah Arrived at the Royal Palace on 18 September 2008
  • The Ministry of Economy and Finance Has Not Taken Any Action to Decrease the Price of Fuel Following Samdech Hun Sen’s Order
  • The Murder Case of the Journalist of Moneaksekar Khmer [Mr. Khim Sambo and his 21-year-old son] Reaches a State to Call Those Who Know Much to Be Asked [medical doctors of Calmette Hospital, editor of The Cambodia Daily, Mr. Dam Sith, editor-in-chief of Moneaksekar Khmer, staff of ADHOC and of LICADHO]


Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #247, 19.9.2008

  • [Opposition party President] Sam Rainsy Affirms that on 24 and 25 September 2008, There Will Be No Opposition Party Parliamentarians Present to Satisfy the Face of the Cambodian People’s Party


Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #102, 19.9.2008

  • The Head of the Government Affirmed His Final Position Regarding some Political Issues Related to the Opposition Parties [he warns to sue Sam Rainsy for insulting the new National Assembly by saying that it is a thief, ghost, wind, and a Yuon (Vietnamese) National Assembly]
  • Vendors of the New Market Plan to Protest in Front of Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen’s House [related to the plan to narrow their stalls]
  • US Military Medics [from the US Tripler Army Medical Center] for Smile, Sound, and Sight, Treat Khmer Citizens Free of Charge [from 10 to 19 September 2008]


Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6454, 19.9.2008

  • Thai Prime Minister [Somchai Wongsawat – สมชาย วงศ์สวัสดิ์] Responds Positively to Continue to Negotiate with Cambodia [after Prime Minister Hun Sen’ request for negotiations]
  • Delegations from Hong Kong and from [South] Korea Look for Development in Sihanoukville [with plans build new towns, casinos, hospitals, stadiums, hotels, a public zoo, golf courses, resorts, and seashore and on-the-sea recreation sites, and also preserving a natural forest park]


Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #34, 19.9.2008

  • The United States Expects that the Khmer Rouge Tribunal Will No Longer Be Involved in a Corruption Scandal
  • [Sam Rainsy Party Deputy Secretary General] Mu Sochua: 20% or 21% of Khmer Citizens Lack Food [she raised this problem, based on a survey by the Cambodia Development Resource Institute]


Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4698, 19.9.2008

  • Cambodia Criticizes Thailand for Lying to the World by Announcing that the Ta Krabei Temple [located in an unmarked border region] Belongs to Them
  • Vietnam Sends Seventeen Khmer Citizens Home, Whom They Rescued from a Leaking Ship
  • Digging up of Khmer Ancestral Graves Happens Again in Thma Pouk [probably by artifact plunderers – Banteay Meanchey]


Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3411, 19.9.2008

  • The Court Summons Representatives of the Citizens and of the Company over the Boeng Kak Lake Land Dispute Today [after citizens had filed a complaint, requesting to stop the dredging of sand to fill the lake]

Cambodia related section of the press conference at the US Department of State on 16.9.2008
Source:
http://useu.usmission.gov/Article.asp?ID=B76C5503-996F-4F03-AAC0-749F4312BA5D

QUESTION: Did you manage to get answers to the two questions that I had at the end of the briefing yesterday,…[on] the Cambodia issue?

MR. MCCORMACK: As a matter of fact, we did. And I have on Cambodia – I have some –…
I’ll just read – I have a few points on this. I’ll read them off to you and see if they’re useful.

We are committed to helping Cambodia in its efforts to hold Khmer Rouge leaders accountable for their crimes. The State Department has notified Congress of our intention to provide $1.8 million to help the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia, the E-triple-C, complete its task. We believe that the court is now capable of meeting international standards of justice, and our decision at this time to identify funds reflects our belief that the court has the capacity to respond effectively and appropriately to these allegations.

While the court still has more to do, the ECCC has made significant strides to overcome international concerns about corruption, mismanagement, and political influence, including adding a new international deputy administrator, strengthening management practices, and establishing procedures to deal with allegations of wrongdoing.

Nonetheless, the court must still take appropriate steps to address the current allegations and hold responsible those involved.

QUESTION: And this was – a similar message was conveyed by the Deputy [Secretary of State Negroponte] when he was there?

MR. MCCORMACK: Well, the issue was discussed by the Deputy in Phnom Penh.

QUESTION: Yeah, but, I mean – but he told them that they were going to get the money.

MR. MCCORMACK: I have not spoken with the Deputy, so I can’t vouch firsthand for his message. But the issue was raised.

Click here to have a look at the last editorial – how the whole Khmer press withholds the final, decisive document from the public, before the Preah Vihear Temple was listed as a World Heritag Site.

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Friday, 1.8.2008: Agreement on the Protection of Activities and on the Promotion of Investments between Cambodia and Japan Now in Force

Posted on 2 August 2008. Filed under: Week 571 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 571

https://cambodiamirror.wordpress.com/2007/06/16/friday-1562007-cambodian-prime-minister-attracts-japanese-investments-by-promising-to-combat-corruption/

“Cambodian and Japan had signed an agreement [last year on 14 June 2007 – see The Mirror, Vol. 11, No. 512: 15.6.2007: Cambodian Prime Minister Attracts Japanese Investments by Promising to Combat Corruption] about the protection and the promotion of investments, in order to open ways for Japanese investors to enter the Cambodian investment market.

“According to an announcement by the Japanese Embassy in Cambodia on 21 July 2008, this agreement [came now into force and] will bring two important positive results. ‘First, it is the first symbolic step to strengthen economic relations between Cambodia and Japan; second, it contributes strategies to develop Cambodia to promote economic development through direct foreign investments.’

“This announcement continues to say that besides the two points mentioned above it is an agreement which guarantees Japanese investors a clear investment process, with the freedom to transfer financial gains, and with equal contracts and equal rights in solving problems to increase transparency.

“So far, Cambodia could not attract big private investments from Japan.

“According to figures from the Council for the Development of Cambodia in 2007, Japanese investors ranked fifth, compared to other foreign investors, such as investors from China, Thailand, South Korea, Vietnam, and Saudi Arabia, with total investments of approximately US$81 billion, while Japan is the biggest donor country for Cambodia. These statistics show that from 1992 to 2006, Japan granted approximately US$1,177 million, and the Japanese government maintains a policy to always grant approximately US$122 million to Cambodia each year.” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4656, 1.8.2008

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Friday, 1 August 2008


Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1708, 1.8.2008

  • Funcinpec Has an Unclear Position whether or not to Join a New Government [led by the Cambodian People’s Party]; The Sam Rainsy Party Wrote to the King, Asking to Pardon Samdech Krom Preah [Norodom Ranariddh – 31 July 2008]
  • Siam [Thailand] Stepped Up Deployment of Troops and Tanks Across the Cham Sragam Border Crossing under the Pretext of Military Exercises [facing Anlong Veng and Oddar Meanchey – 30-31 July 2008]
  • Fourteen Cambodian Athletes Will Participate in the 29th Olympic Games in Beijing
  • South Korea Holds Military Exercise near the Dokdo Islands [in Korean] which are also Claimed by Japan [called Takeshima in Japanese]


Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #212, 1.7.2008

  • The Sam Rainsy Party, the Human Rights Party, and the Norodom Ranariddh Party Complained About the National Election Committee to the King
  • High Ranking Officials of Funcinpec Denied that There Is a Rift [according Funcinpec first vice-president Lu Laysreng on 31 July 2008]


Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #62, 1.8.2008

  • The [former] King [Norodom Sihanouk] Will Join to Fight) for the Preah Vihear Temple [according to his French letter from December 2003 which has been issued again recently]


Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6412, 1.8.2008

  • Thaksin’s Wife [Ms. Potjaman Shinawatra] Was Sentenced to Serve Three Years in Prison [for tax evasion]; It Is Suspected that [ousted former Thai prime minister] Mr. Thaksin Might Try to Escape from the Country
  • The Israeli Prime Minister [Ehud Olmert] Will Resign from His Position in September [as he is facing corruption allegations]


Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3527, 1.8.2008

  • UN High Commissioner Urges the Authorities to Reveal the Murderers Who Killed [Moneaksekar Khmer journalist] Mr. Khim Sambo and His Son [on 11 July 2008]
  • Civil Society Organizations [the Committee for Free and Fair Elections, the Neutral and Impartial Committee for Free and Fair Elections in Cambodia, and the Cambodia Citizen Development Organization] Want an Administrative Court to Be Created Soon, in Order to Punish Irregularities Committed by the National Election Committee


Raksmei Angkor, Vol.15, #1342, 1.8.2008

  • A Girl Was Lured by [two female] Friends to a Guesthouse to Kill Her by Cutting Her Throat [Russey Keo, Phnom Penh – 31 July 2008]


Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4656, 1.8.2008

  • Agreement on the Protection of Activities and on the Promotion of Investments between Cambodia and Japan Now in Force
  • Decaying Body of a [12 or 13-year old] Girl Found in a Dirty Water Pond in the Olympic Stadium [31 July 2008]
  • Vietnam Asserts that Hundreds of Livestock Have Been Imported into Its Country [everyday continuing, from Cambodia] without Paying Tax

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, 27.5.2008: Hun Sen Announced to Give Golden Handcuffs to Prince Norodom Ranariddh and to Invite Him to Prey Sar Prison

Posted on 28 May 2008. Filed under: Week 562 | Tags: , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 562

“According to Article 46 of the Criminal Code, the lawsuit between Prince Ranariddh and the Funcinpec Secretary-General Mr. Nhek Bun Chhay, accusing the Prince of abusing the confidence, motivated Prince Ranariddh to flee the country to stay with the ‘phantom fox’ [his partner Uk Phalla, whom the Prime Minister calls so] with no courage to face the law.

“Although Mr. Hun Sen indirectly insulted a president of a party who is outside the country, without mentioning the name of Prince Ranariddh, Khmer citizens understand well that when Mr. Hun Sen talked about Princess Marie Ranariddh, Prince Ranariddh’s former wife, and when he warned to offer royal golden handcuffs, it was clearly understood that Mr. Hun Sen directly warned Prince Ranariddh, who escaped and is living in Malaysia with the ‘phantom fox,’ and he does not dare to return to the country. He and his followers accused Prime Minister Mr. Hun Sen of abusing the King’s right to grant a pardon to Prince Ranariddh.

“On the Morning of 26 May 2008, Mr. Hun Sen expressed his strong and direct reactions against Prince Ranariddh, who is the president of the Norodom Ranariddh Party, and who is living outside the country, ‘If you, all the Norodom Ranariddh Party officials, wonder, you can go to the Royal Palace to ask the King in which respect Hun Sen abused the King’s rights.’

“Mr. Hun Sen added that there is no one who rejects the King’s rights, but the King’s procedure must have their qualifications. Without mentioning any name, Mr. Hun Sen continued that previously they accused him of setting this or that condition in order that the Prince can return to the country.

“Mr. Hun Sen went on to say that previously, Prince Ranariddh had wanted the King to pardon him, because he has guilt – but now he announced also that he has no guilt. Mr. Hun Sen continued, ‘When did you have a guilt? When the court issued the verdict, you appealed – and because you appealed, the judgment did not became valid. Now the Appeals Court sentenced you and you appealed to the Supreme Court. So you claim that you are not guilty, but if you are not guilty, why did you ask the King to pardon you? Unless the Supreme Court has sentenced you… – but if you are guilty, you will be punished.’

“Mr. Hun Sen said that previously, when the Prince was sentenced to 40 years imprisonment over having a contract to import guns and dealing with the Khmer Rouge, ‘Hun Sen could spare him because it was my own case, but now this is not my case, I want to make this clear.’ Mr. Hun Sen said, ‘That party president and his officials, who accused Hun Sen of not recognizing the King’s rights, please tell me which points you refer to?’

“Mr. Hun Sen said, ‘This case has been delayed for a long time, because if I hit the older brother [Prince Ranariddh], it hurts his younger brother [the King], and if I hit the child [Prince Ranariddh], it hurts his father [the former King]. Some observers said that Mr. Hun Sen indirectly insulted and looked down on the Royal Family.

“Mr. Hun Sen added that arrangements for an amnesty were always made to be announced at the Khmer New Year, on Pchum Ben Day, or on the King’s Birthday, or the Father King’s, or the King’s Mother’s Birthdays; and the procedures for amnesties had been prepared by the Minister of Justice, together with clarifications by the heads of the prisons, to clarify that the prisoners had promised not to commit any crime again. Then they brought requests to the Ministry of Justice, the Minister will bring the clarifications about the prisoner’s promise to the Prime Minister. Finally, the Prime Minister will bring it to the King to be signed to grant an amnesty.

Note:
Article 27 of the Constitution of the Kingdom of Cambodia says:
“The King shall have the right to grant partial or complete amnesty.”

“Mr. Hun Sen went on to say that the Prince claims that he has not any guilt; but then he said that I abused the King’s rights. Once he said it like this, once he said it like that – how can he be a person from the legal profession?

“Mr. Hun Sen warned, ‘I have asked [the Director General of the National Police] Mr. Hok Lundy to make handcuffs painted with golden color. If you are not guilty, why do you not return to the country? Nobody prohibits you. When you left, we did not force you, and if you come back, we will not care about you, so why do you not come when actually you are not guilty?’

“Mr. Hun Sen was very angry with the president of a certain party whose name was not mentioned, and he said that that party’s president’s officials in the country had also accused him of abusing the King’s rights…

“The US Ambassador, Mr. Joseph A. Mussomeli, had told journalists in Kompong Thom some days ago that Prince Ranariddh should return to the country to address and to finish his case legally at the court.

“However, people from the legal profession said that Prince Ranariddh has no courage to return and to face the court in Cambodia, because if he returns, the court will issue a warrant to detain him temporarily, to continue the inquest and to prevent him from escaping abroad again, even though the Supreme Court has not yet opened a hearing to decide whether Prince Ranariddh is guilty or not.

“Prince Ranariddh had been sued by Funcinpec Secretary-General Nhek Bun Chhay on the accusation of having abused the confidence over the sale of the Funcinpec headquarters at the base of the Chroy Chongva Bridge, and over putting of his name, to be the owner of the new headquarters at a Phnom Penh suburb.

“The Phnom Penh court had opened a hearing of Prince Ranariddh in absentia to serve eighteen months in prison, and ordered him to pay US$150,000 to Funcinpec, with Mr. Nhek Bun Chhay being the Funcinpec representative.

“Analysts said that if Prince Ranariddh does not dare to return to the country and to face the court, his party will lose the confidence and the supports from the citizens. And now, some officials who had followed him for many years, leave him.” Chuoy Khmer, Vol.2, #107, 27.5.2008

[Note: The translation of this article is slightly abbreviated while keeping the basic content intact]

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Tuesday, 27 May 2008


Chakraval, Vol.16, #2780, 27.5.2008

  • Prime Minister Hun Sen Ordered the Kandal Provincial Governor [Chhun Sirun on 23 May 2008] to Cancel a Land Title of the Phanimex Company in the Veal Sbov Commune [Kien Svay District – over a land dispute]


Chuoy Khmer, Vol.2, #107, 27.5.2008

  • Hun Sen Announced to Give Golden Handcuffs to Prince Norodom Ranariddh and to Invite Him to Prey Sar Prison


Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1651, 27.5.2008

  • Cambodia Canceled the Prohibitory Notice against Exporting Rice and Paddy Rice
  • Donor Countries Promise to Provide Aid of US$50 Million to Burma


Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6355, 27.5.2008

  • Regarding an Attempt for “Change”, Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen Said: You Only Have the Right to Change through Voting [he said on 26 May 2008]
  • It Is about One Million Tonnes of Paddy Rice that Our Farmers Need to Export [says Prime Minister Hun Sen]
  • Land Disputes: Two Groups of People Protesting: One Group Is Walking towards Phnom Penh to Arrive at the Residence [of Prime Minister Hun Sen] in Takhmao, the Other Group Protests in Front of the Battambang Provincial Office
  • Workshop on How to Create Draft Laws for Drafters of Laws Held [on 22 May 2008 at Phnom Penh Hotel, sponsored by USAID]


Meatophum, Vol.52, #690, 26-31.5.2008

  • The Cambodian People’s Party Will Not Lead the Government together with the Sam Rainsy Party! [said the Prime Minister on 21 May 2008]


Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3470, 27.5.2008

  • Siem [Thailand] Is Happy that Deputy Prime Minister and Senior Minister in Charge of the Council of Ministers Sok An Agreed to Only Include the Body of the Preah Vihear Temple [not the not yet demarkated area around the temple] to Be Listed as a World Heritage Site [after a three-sided meeting in Paris last week]
  • [Sam Rainsy Party president] Sam Rainsy: [Prime Minister] Hun Sen Is Wasting National Funds by Increasing the Number of Members of the National Assembly
  • Development Projects of Foreign Companies along Borders Might Affect Khmer Territory


Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4599, 27.5.2008

  • Seven Parliamentarians from the Sam Rainsy Party [Mr. Mei Bunvithyea, Mr. Chab Rithy, Mr. Bean Thul, Mr. Heang Soriyak and Mr. Iem Chantha, six of them are from Kandal, and Mr. Nou Sovath, Phnom Penh parliamentarian] Left the Party While the President Mr. Sam Rainsy Returned [on 26 May 2008]
  • UN Secretary-General Hopes that Myanmar Will Keep Its Promise [to allow foreign relief groups to work in the destroyed areas]


Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3319, 27.5.2008

  • Sam Rainsy Continues to Call Those Who Had Left the Party to be Garbage and Calls the Cambodian People’s Party to Accept That Garbage

Have a look at last week’s editorial: The oil price spiral – special investments – and a comparison of the activities in Myanmar and in China

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