Monday, 14.7.2008: A Journalist and His Son Murdered

Posted on 15 July 2008. Filed under: Week 569 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 5689

By sharing the Declaration of the Club of Cambodian Journalists, we show our shock and our solidarity.

Club of Cambodian Journalists

Members of the Club of Cambodian journalists express their deep concern about press freedom and the security of journalists in Cambodia, after unknown people shot dead Mr. Khim Sambo – 45, a journalist with Moneaksekar Khmer – and his son, at 6:30 p.m. on 11 July 2008 in the center of Phnom Penh.

The Club of Cambodian Journalists is aware that this shooting occurred at a time of heightened security during the election campaign for the fourth term parliamentary election, which will be held on 27 July 2008.

The Club of Cambodian Journalists is shocked hearing about this lamentable murder. The Club of Cambodian Journalists would like to share our sorrow and condolences about the deaths of Mr. Khim Sambo and of his son with the family of the deceased. At the same time, the Club of Cambodian Journalists, which is an independent organization with nearly 200 members countrywide, condemns this murder and calls on the authorities to investigate this event and to arrest the murderers and those who are involved with them, so that they will be sent to court to be prosecuted, based on the law. There is no reason which can justify this murder.

Phnom Penh, 12 July 2008

Club of Cambodian Journalist

= = = = =

Germany Pledged Euro 1.5 Million to the Khmer Rouge Tribunal

“The German Government has pledged to provide Euro 1.5 million, equal to approx. US$2.4 million, for the process of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal.

“According to an announcement on 11 July 2008, these funds will be provided to the section of the tribunal supporting the victims’ participation in the tribunal, which was created to find justice for people victimized during the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia.

“Since 2005, Germany has already provided US$5.5 million to support the Khmer Rouge Tribunal. As for the funds pledged now, they are a part of funds to extend the process of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, after it has been decided that this tribunal will continue until 2010, and therefore more funds to cover the expenses are now needed than projected before.

“Before the proceedings started, US$56.3 million were approved for the tribunal; then, after plans were changed, up to US$143 million were calculated, but only US$86.7 million were approved.

“So far, five [former] Khmer Rouge Leaders have been arrested: the former head of state, Khiev Samphan, the former president of the assembly, Nuon Chea, the former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ieng Sary, and his wife Ieng Thirith, and Duch, a former chief of the Tuol Sleng Prison of the Khmer Rouge regime.” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4640, 13-14.7.2008

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Monday, 14 July 2008


Chouy Khmer, Vol.2, #133, 14.7.2008

  • Ngor Srun, Secretary of State of the Council of Ministers and Son-in-Law of Chea Sim [President of the Senate and of the Cambodian People’s Party] Was Attacked with Acid [and injured seriously – 13 July 2008]


Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1692, 13-14.7.2008

  • Different Circles Condemn the Shooting of Moneaksekar Khmer Journalist [Mr. Khim Sambou and his son. Both died]
  • A Cambodian Was Elected to Be Chairperson of the International Drug Enforcement Conference from the East Asia Region [comprising 15 countries – Mayor-General Moek Dara, head of the anti-drug office for the Ministry of Interior and secretary of sate of the National Anti-Drug Committee]


Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #198, 14-15.7.2008

  • [Former Khmer Rouge Leader] Khiev Samphan Chose New Lawyer, but He Has Not Yet Received a Response [from the lawyers contacted – according to a source closed to the ECCC, he is considering two lawyers, Mr. Heng Ty – former president of the Appeals Court during the Sangkum Reastr Niyum regime, and Mr. Sar Sovann, a lawyer with a doctorate from France]
  • The Preah Vihear Temple Is an Achievement of the Khmer Great Heroic King [Norodom Sihanouk]; the Cambodian People’s Party Should Not Take the Opportunity to Cheat the People


Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #48, 13-14.7.2008

  • The Great Heroic King [Norodom Sihanouk] Is Satisfied with a Plan to Construct a Hospital in the Preah Vihear Region
  • Civil Society Organizations Are Concerned about Political Security [for voters]
  • Expert Officials Call All Citizens to Be Careful with Dengue Fever
  • Next Year, Cambodia Will Export 50,000 Tonnes of Raw Rubber [according to Mr. Ly Phala, director of the Department of Rubber Plantations]
  • Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6396, 14.7.2008
  • [Former] King Norodom Sihanouk Released a Statement that the Preah Vihear Temple and Its Mountain Belongs to Khmer 100% [8 July 2008]

  • Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4640, 13-14.7.2008

    • Germany Pledged Euro 1.5 Million to the Khmer Rouge Tribunal
    • Rate of Victims by Mines and Unexploded Ordnance in the Country Is Declining [Cambodian Red Cross: from January to June 2008, there were only 170 victims, compared to the same period in 2007, when there were 210]
    • [Mr. Pongphon Adireksan] The Chairperson of the National Committee on Thailand’s Convention for World Heritage Protection Advised the President of the Opposition Party and the Demonstrators that Thailand Has Not Lost Land; Army Commander [Anupong Paochinda]: People Should Not Be Too Nationalistic
    • Sokun Nisa [famous Khmer singer] Drove a Lexus and Hit a Truck, Breaking the Front Part of Her Car; She Apologized to the Truck Driver [Battambang]
    • Oil Rises to US$147 per Barrel because of the Iran Issue

    Have a look at the last editorial – The struggle towards openness and access to information happens in many places – and it may help to mutually learn from other experiences.

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    Wednesday, 9.7.2008: CEDAC Expresses Optimism about the Sustainability of Farming

    Posted on 9 July 2008. Filed under: Week 568 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 568

    “Phnom Penh: The Cambodian Center for Study and Development in Agriculture [CEDAC] has finished a project to help improve the living standards of the poor in five southern provinces of Cambodia in June 2008. This project was funded by the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction [JFPR] though the Asian Development Bank for a period of five years, and US$1.3 million were spent.

    “However, what CEDAC has to think about is, after the project has finished, to choose actions that can guarantee the continuity of what has been built up. In a discussion held late June, the governor of Batheay District, Kompong Cham, raised previous experiences that there used to be many organizations assisting this district, but when their project fund came to an end, there was no continuity at all. Villagers are afraid that CEDAC might repeat the same situation when it runs out of funds. But local authorities that observe CEDAC evaluate that the project implementation of CEDAC has achieved many good results. The improvement of the living standard of the poor at the targeted community led, to some extent, to a reduction of poverty.

    “Eight outstanding representative farmers from Svay Rieng, Prey Veng, Kompong Cham, Kompong Chhnang, and Takeo asserted that their families and the members of their communities are richer, because they have attended different training courses about practices of techniques by CEDAC. There they learned how the community can save money, how to breed animals and fish, or to conserve trees, to grow crops, to do rice farming based on natural methods etc., all of which is closely related to marketability of the products.

    “Mr. Lang Seng Houn, a local coordinator, said that the participation by local authority representatives from villages, communes, and districts cooperating with farmers’ communities is an important factor that brings poverty alleviation at those target places. Wherever there is participation by local authorities, those places will develop more quickly.

    “Mr. Lang Seng Houn showed figures that among 192 villages from five provinces, 14,300 families benefited from the project. the number of farmers who cooperated is 7,300, the living standard of 500 families changed greatly; 5,900 families experienced an average change, and 800 families got poorer. The number of women who have changed their attitudes and abandoned their old habits is 3,500, and the number of youth under the same category is 900. And 1,500 of the poorest families who sold their labor to have some income have changed their living standard and have become independent farmers; the livelihood of farmers in general is better. Generally, they can earn 80% more from the increase of the agricultural production and from the reduction of other expenses. They have stepped up the basis for this to retain the continuity of their production teams, and 718 teams have saved money – they have 6,000 families as members so that they are able to link their products to markets. Each family earns from Riel 1.4 million to Riel 2.6 million [approx. US$340 to US$635 per farming season] from their agricultural products; those are 427 families in Kompong Chhnang, Svay Rieng, and Kompong Cham. Their income is from paddy rice, from the breeding of chickens and pigs, and from the planting of vegetables and other crops.

    “Dr. Yang Saing Komar [dean, Faculty of Agriculture and Rural Development, International University, Phnom Penh] pointed to key measures contributing to the sustainability when there are no more external funds. What can replace funds for farmers’ communities to guarantee the continuity of their activities are human resources who have been trained with all skills since five years, always with a link to market mechanisms. All agricultural products created by the community must be taken to markets by the farmers, and they have to sell their own products. Money saved in the community is capital to replace the external funding and can guarantee the sustainability of their community. Production and the link to markets are key methods to develop the rural economy to become active. Trained persons, 995 human resources of the community, will be the main and strong activists who can continue to develop the community without depending on external funds.

    “Mr. Komar added that for economic activities money is needed, ‘and we have money which was saved in our community.’ By 2011, this organization has the ambition to increase the money-saving community up to 4,000 villages countrywide, without borrowing loans or depending on foreign donor countries.

    “This fund will become a basic experience which can lead to a successfully functioning market that carries great responsibility for the society, especially for the living standard of farmers, and for food security for customers, which can guarantee sustainable development at the basis.” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4636, 9.7.2008

    Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
    Wednesday, 9 July 2008


    Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1688, 9.7.2008

    • The Thai Constitutional Court Ruled that a Joint Communique Signed between Cambodia and Thailand Violates the Thai Constitution [as the Thai Minister of Foreign Affairs acted without parliamentary endorsement]
    • The Ministry of Health Distributed More than 80 Tonnes of Abate [chemical substance that is put into stagnant water to kill mosquito eggs and larvae] to Prevent Dengue Fever
      Thousands of Thai Demonstrators Shouted at the Police to Take Action in [deposed former prime minister] Thaksin’s Case Soon [corruption and misuse of power]
    • South Korean Police Warn They Will Use Hot Actions to Suppress Demonstrators against US Beef Imports
    • Thai Rebels [in a Muslim southern Thai province] Attacked a Car Carrying Students; Two [Thai] Soldiers Were Killed and Three Students Were Injured [7 July 2008]
    • [Helicopter of] America Attacked a Wedding Ceremony in Afghanistan [killing at least 22 people]


    Khmer Amatak, Vol.9, #602, 9.7.2008

    • Cambodian People’s Party Does Not Dare to Create Ministry of Immigration [related to illegal Vietnamese]
    • Ou Chrov District Police Chief [Mr. Ing Song You] Runs a Big Casino in Balat Guesthouse [Poipet]


    Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #44, 9.7.2008

    • The Preah Vihear Temple Was Listed as a World Heritage Site [8 July 2008]
    • [Traffic] Accidents Increase because of [traffic] Law Violations


    Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4636, 9.7.2008

    • CEDAC Expresses Optimism about the Sustainability of Farming
    • Situation at the [Preah Vihear Temple] Border Crossing Was Quiet while Cambodia Was Beating Drums and Firing Fireworks to Express Satisfaction about the Preah Vihear Temple
    • Social Network against Child Labor Was Inaugurated in Siem Reap
    • European Commission Plans to spend 1,000 Million Euro against Food Crisis


    Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3354, 9.7.2008

    • Cambodian People’s Party Did Not Participate in Political Parties’ Forum about Anti-Corruption Law [8 July 2008]

    Have a look at the last editorial – Without freedom of information AND an active use of this freedom, emotions can easily lead to dangerous misunderstandings.

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    Saturday, 5.7.2008: 2,600 Megawatt Hydro-Electric Plant to Be Built

    Posted on 6 July 2008. Filed under: Week 567 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 567

    “Phnom Penh: An official of the Ministry of Industry Mines and Energy said that Cambodia plans to construct the first big hydro-electric dam on the upper Mekong River in Kratie in northeast Cambodia, which can generate 2,600 Megawatts.

    “Secretary of State of the Ministry of Industry Mines and Energy, Mr. Ith Prang, said that the feasibility of this potential plan, to provide much electricity, is being studied by an expert company. Mr. Ith Prang stressed that if this plan could be implemented, the dam called Sambo Chumrues would be the first big hydro-electric dam in the history of Cambodia.

    [As the name of the expert company is not mentioned, it is also not possible to easily verify how this gigantic plan relates to the Master Plan Study of Hydropower Development in Cambodia, made public by the Japan International Cooperation Agency – JICA – and the Ministry of Industry, Mines and Energy on 19 July 2007, and planned to be still implemented through 2008, with the consideration that there is ‘Rich potential of hydropower but no master plan for orderly development’ – ‘Selection and prioritisation of 10 hydropower projects from environmental, technical and economic assessment’ – ‘Preparation of Master Plan of Hydropower Development with time horizon of 20 years’ – ‘Avoidance/mitigation of environmental impacts and development of priority hydropower projects for the national interests of Cambodia.’ – The study covers 29 potential much smaller sites in the same area for which now also the gigantic Sambo Chumrues plan is being studied]

    “Mr. Ith Prang added that Cambodia would have enough electricity, and electricity could be sold to some neighboring countries as well in the Greater Mekong Sub-Region, if the plan leads to positive results. Mr. Ith Prang expects that this plan might also help to attract investors and help poor citizens to have access to electricity at a cheap price.

    “Nowadays, the price of electricity in Cambodia is still higher than in neighboring countries, such as Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam, which is a factor that makes most investors, who want to invest in Cambodia, to hesitate. To attract such investors and to meet the shortage of electricity, Cambodia, which has its natural resources as its potential, has created an ambition to develop many hydro-electric dams in different potentially suitable areas.

    “Last year, Mr. Hor Namhong, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Cambodia, said that Cambodia will function as a battery storage of Asia, when electricity is not just enough for the needs of the country, but can also be sold to other countries.

    “Regarding this plan, Mr. Ngy San, a member of the Rivers Coalition in Cambodia [and Deputy Executive Director of the NGO Forum on Cambodia], said that Cambodia welcomes all development plans of the government to produce electricity, but he suggests that the government should check its plans carefully and should publish information widely to communities and non-government-organizations before it makes final decisions for such constructions, in order to avoid negative impacts on the environment and on the eco-system. Mr. Ngy San continued that what he is worried about most is that the construction of this huge plant might destroy the quality of water and the movement of fish, and it might block shipping on this river.

    “Relating to these problems, the government must carefully consider the continuity of the environment and the communities living there before it agrees to investment plans of any company [see also International Rivers – people – water – life and the Foundation for Ecological Recovery].

    “The director of the Sesan, Srae Pok, and Sekong Rivers Protection Network [also called ‘3S Rivers Protection Network’], Mr. Kim Sangha, said that the plans of hydro-electric dams always have more effects on the environment and the eco-system than providing economic benefits. He added that he does not oppose the government development plans, but if the government does not study the context very carefully in advance, there might be serious effects on the citizens’ living and on the environment, and it might create other problems in the future.

    “On 13 June 2008, the Cambodian government approved laws for the constructions of two more hydro-electric plants with the power of 246 megawatt and 338 megawatt at Stung Tatai and Stung Russey Chhrum rivers [these regions are mentioned in the joint plan of Ministry Industry Mines and Energy together and JICA, mentioned above], besides many other plants being constructed, such as the Kamchay Hydro-Electric Dam in Kampot and the Atai Hydro-Electric Dam located between Pursat and Koh Kong, which can provide 193 megawatt and 120 megawatt respectively.” Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #41, 5.7.2008

    Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
    Saturday, 5 July 2008


    Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1685, 5.7.2008

    • The Phnom Penh Municipality Summoned Thirty Passenger Transporting Companies Advising Them Not to Increase Traveling Costs Four Days before and after the Election
    • In the First Six Months of 2008, Countrywide More than 2,000 Children Had Dengue Fever, and 23 Children Died


    Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #41, 5.7.2008

    • 2,600 Megawatt Hydro-Electric Plant Is Planed to Be Built
      [Minister of Information] Mr. Khieu Kanharith Supports the Creation of a Women’s Journalists’ Association
    • Thousands of Hectares of Forest Land in Varin District [Siem Reap] Are Being Cleared


    Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6389, 5-6.7.2008

    • At this Meeting of UNESCO in Canada: The Khmer Preah Vihear Temple Is among the 27 World Heritage Sites Proposed to Be Listed
    • Two Persons [a man and a 6-year-old child] Were Shot Dead [by Thai black-clad Special Border Police] Among Twelve People, Including Men, Women, and Children, When They Tried to Cross [illegally] into Thailand [3 July 2008 – Banteay Meanchey]
    • A 12-Year-Old Girl Was Raped and Drowned [in a shallow pond] in a Palm Oil Plantation [Prey Nub District, Sihanoukville – 4 July 2008]


    Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3504, 5.7.2008

    • International Human Rights Organization [Human Rights Watch] Pushes Yuon [Vietnamese] Authorities to Return Tim Sakhan to Cambodia Soon
    • Kampot Election Committee Keeps [Sam Rainsy Party parliamentarian] Ms. Mu Sochua’s Lawsuit Unsolved [against a deputy village chief for the attempt to hit her with a motorbike, and against the Kampot municipality deputy secretary, for the use of a car with a Royal Cambodian Armed Forces license plate during a Cambodian People’s Party’s election campaign, and for twisting her arm, so that her blouse opened and exposed her body, when she tried to take a picture of the car’s license plate]


    Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4633, 5.7.2008

    • Cambodia Is Strongly Determined to Implement Laws against Sexual and Human Trafficking
    • [Thai Prime Minister] Samak Asserted that There Was a Clandestine Plan to Arrest Him [at an air force airport] to Start a Coup on 4 July 2008 [when he returned from his official visits to China and Brunei, but he directed his plane to land at the civilian international Suvarnabhumi Airport]
    • 1.5 Billion People Might Die because of Starvation [according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization – FAO]
    • Oil Price Increases to US$146 per Barrel [in New York]


    Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3351, 5.7.2008

    • Cambodian People’s Party [in Kratie] Sues the No-Longer-Opposition-Party President [Mr. Sam Rainsy] for Insult [of the current leaders, as he said that they are thieves who steal from the nation, during his election campaign]

    Have a look at the last editorial – Preah Vihear still in the headlines – more information about Thailand’s and Cambodia’s documents.

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