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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Cambodia and Vietnam Step Up Their Cooperation in the Fields of Economy and Development – Monday, 7.12.2009

Posted on 8 December 2009. Filed under: Week 642 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 642

“Sihanoukville: The Kingdom of Cambodia and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam signed several agreements, especially about the economy and about investments towards the development of the country.

“High ranking officials of Cambodia and of Vietnam again expressed a common position during the 11th Cambodian-Vietnamese bilateral committee meeting about cooperation in economy, culture, science, and technology, on 4 December 2009, at the Independence Hotel in Sihanoukville. There, an Aide Memoire of the meeting was also signed. It was signed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Deputy Prime Minister Hor Namhong, and by the Vietnamese Minister of Foreign Affairs, Deputy Prime Minister Pham Gia Khiem [Phạm Gia Khiêm].

“The Secretary of State of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Ung Sean, spoke to journalists after the meeting, saying that the Aide Memoire signed is a new success in strengthening the close and the longer term relations, as well as the cooperation between both countries. He added that the results achieved are a response to intentions of the leaders of both countries, as well as of the people.

“Mr. Ung Sean added, ‘I noticed that the Cambodian-Vietnamese committee meetings are getting to a deeper level from year to year, because of the stability and the speedy growth in both countries. The Cambodian economy has also achieves progress, though it is less than that of Vietnam. Thus, what we have achieved at present reflects the economic growth and the social progress in both countries. I hope that all relevant ministries and institutions with their representatives here will use the Aide Memoire as a guide for the cooperation between both sides – Cambodia-Vietnam and Vietnam-Cambodia – in order to accomplish what we have noted down in this document.’

“Mr. Ung Sean added, ‘During the meeting, there were some issues for which we have not yet achieved solutions, and they will require further discussion. In the meantime, he asked all relevant ministries and institutions to continue to discuss them to achieve in next year’s meeting what we have not yet achieved. Some tasks need further research and decisions from top political leaders, without which other institutions of both countries cannot make decisions directly.’

“The Vietnamese Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Deputy Prime Minister Pham Gia Khiem, said in the meeting, ‘During this discussions, high ranking leaders of the both countries worked very hard, and we can conclude that success can be achieved through mutual trust, which includes solidarity and cooperation between both countries.’

“He expressed his appreciation for the increasingly effective and transparent cooperation from day to day, which is in line with the progress of the country, and this brings also new changes for the administration.

“Mr. Ung Sean said that during the meeting, 26 points for cooperation were discussed:

  1. In the education sector: Vietnam continues to grant 100 long-term scholarships and 450 short-term scholarships to Cambodia.
  2. In the field of agriculture: Cambodia continues to cooperate with Vietnam in the plantation of rubber. For this, 100,000 hectares of land have to be found, according to the request by Vietnam.

Besides this, both sides discussed also pest control, as insects destroy crops, and also the protection of some rare animals was on the agenda, so that they do not become extinct, to be achieved by the suppression illegal trafficking in these endangered species. The most important thing are good border relations, and both countries continue to demarcate the border, to be finalize in 2012.

“Also, there was discussion about cooperation in the construction of hydro-electricity dams along the Sesan II river, and both sides will try to avoid impacts on the environment. As for consulates and immigration offices, both sides decided to offer visas for Vietnamese tourists to visit Cambodia up to 30 days, while before visas were given only for 14 days.

“Relating to visas for Cambodian and Vietnamese workers, both sides agreed as a policy to allow workers with sufficient documents to stay for one year.

“In the land transport sector, Cambodia encourages Vietnam to finish the construction of National Road 78 from Ou Ya Dav to Ban Lung in Ratanakiri soon. Vietnam promised to finish it by 31 January 2010. Meanwhile, both sides promised to seek funds to build the Chrey Thom bridge soon. As for border demarcations, both sides gave orders that border markers put already must be maintained in place, but it must be ensured that there is no negative impact on the interests of both sides.

“Regarding investments, Cambodia noted Vietnam’s request to talk about the signing of a agreement to abolish overlapping double taxes.

“According to news from the Vietnam News Agency, published on 5 December 2009, Vietnam plans to invest US$2 billion in 2010.” Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2117, 6-7.12.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Monday, 7 December 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #355, 6-7.12.2009

  • [Prime Minister] Hun Sen Claimed that There Will Be No War, while the Cambodian-Siamese [Thai] Diplomatic Dispute Is Still Tense
  • Puea Thai Party President [General Chavalit Yongchaiyudh] Believes that the Alleged Spy Siwarak Will Be Released

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2117, 6-7.12.2009

  • Cambodia and Vietnam Step Up Their Cooperation in the Fields of Economy and Development
  • Samdech Hun Sen: Fighting and Intimidating Each Other Is Outdated
  • Fire Burnt Down 27 Houses in Poipet

Khmer Amatak, Vol.10, #690, 7.12.2009

  • [The President of the Cambodian People’s Party and of the Senate] Chea Sim Was Sent for Emergency Medical Attention to Singapore because of Hypertension

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #548, 6-7.12.2009

  • Different Opinions Were Voiced over the Permission of the Cambodian Government for Yuon [Vietnamese] Workers to Work in Cambodia [officials from the Sam Rainsy Party and from the Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association (ADHOC) said that this will affect the labor market of Khmer citizens]
  • Amnesty International and Khmer Historians Explain that a New War Cannot Happen because of some more Summons for More Former Khmer Rouge Leaders [to appear at the Khmer Rouge Tribunal]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6824, 7.12.2009

  • A Man Killed His Wife because of Jealousy, and then Escaped [Sihanoukville]

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer Edition], Vol.1, #61, 7.12.2009

  • The Prime Minister Warned Citizens Not to Enter Thai Territory Illegally [to cut trees or to do something illegal, in order to avoid arrest and being shot dead by Thai authorities]
  • In 2009, the Number of Deaths in Traffic Accidents Is Rising, but the Number of Injuries Declines [there were 5,543 traffic accidents countrywide within eight months of 2009, where 1,209 people died, while during the corresponding period in 2008, there were 1,100 deaths caused by 6,827 accidents]
  • Thai Fishing Merchants Seek New Licenses in Koh Kong [to enter Cambodian maritime territory to do fishing; the licenses are valid for 6 months]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5066, 6-7.12.2009

  • The Cambodian Prime Minister Launched the Construction of a Road [from Oddar Meanchey to Siem Reap], Rejecting a Thai Loan Offer
  • Four Female Teachers Were Dismissed, Accused of Taking Money from the Students; then All Teachers Started to Strike, Halting all Teaching [demanding the Department of Education to allow the four dismissed teachers to resume their work – at the Bak Touk primary school in Phnom Penh]

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The Appeals Court Delayed Hearing on Chea Ratha’s Case for the Second Time – Saturday, 7.11.2009

Posted on 8 November 2009. Filed under: Week 637 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 637

“The Appeals Court of Cambodia has delayed a hearing on former national military police officer Chea Ratha over the crime of an acid attack on Ms. Ya Sok Nim, the aunt of Ms. In Soklida, who had a lesbian relationship with Chea Ratha.

“The second delay was made again without giving a clear reason, like it was also with the first delay on 22 October 2009.

“Ms. Ya Sok Nim and her husband had written a letter to the Court of Appeals requesting it to reject the decision of the Phnom Penh Municipal Court to release seven suspects that were identified by police as responsible for the acid attack.

“In the judgment, which had been openly criticized by police, a judge of the Phnom Penh Municipal Court, Mr. Din Sivuthy, ruled on 31 August 2009 to release Ms. Chea Ratha and six accomplices allegedly involved in the acid attack against Ms. Ya Sok Nim on 8 May 2008.

“Though there had been a strong challenge from Ms. Ya Sok Nim’s lawyer, the judge Sivuthy mentioned the lack of evidence as the basis for his decision, which was a surprise.

“After the court had pronounced this judgment, Ms. Ya Sok Nim and her relatives held a press conference, during which they re-played a recorded phone conversation, and in this conversation, a woman, identified as Ms. Chea Ratha, was threatening to use serious violence against Ms. Ya Sok Nim and her family. Some days later, she was attacked with acid.

“The Municipal Court has conducted hearings already twice where it finally decided to lift the accusation on two cases of acid attack from Ms. Chea Ratha. Seemingly, because of dollar power and probably a powerful person, the Court of Appeals delayed its hearings twice already.

“Ms. Ya Sok Nim’s letter, published by local newspapers on 25 September 2009, asked the Prosecutor General of the Court of Appeals to find justice for her. Mr. Uong Vibol and Ms. Ya Sok Nim wrote, ‘Your Excellency, to find justice for the victim… I and my wife, who suffers from the cruel activity of criminals… please help to order the prosecutor of the Phnom Penh Municipal Court to accept an appeal against the judgment by a group of judges led by Mr. Din Sivuthy who has lifted the accusations.’

“The crime of this acid attack on Ms. Ya Sok Nim is similar to other cases which happened previously in Cambodia.

“The victim and her family, members of civil society, and observers of the cruel acid attack against Ms. Ya Sok Nim are waiting to see whether the Appeals Court rejects the decision of the Phnom Penh Municipal Court or keeps this unjust judgment valid in the next hearing.

“The decision by a judge of the Phnom Penh Municipal Court caused the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Justice to establish a special committee, to review the courts’ work. The creation of this special committee had triggered criticism from people from professions of law and from civil society officials, saying that the government interferes in the institution of the courts.

“However, the Minister of Interior, Deputy Prime Minister Sar Kheng, wrote to explain to Prime Minister Hun Sen that this new committee just reviews the courts’ work, where there had been frequent information about irregularities by releasing perpetrators.

“Police officials of the Ministry of Interior had complained that the police had tried very hard to arrest perpetrators, but the courts released them. Therefore they wait to see whether Ms. Chea Ratha does have the same fate like Ms. Khuon Sophal or not, the former wife of a high ranking official at the Council of Ministers.

“The life and the appearance of the actress Tat Marina [who suffered also an acid attack] were saved by American doctors. But she and her family had decided to flee from the country in order to wait there for justice to be achieved by the Khmer authorities. They wait to see when the authorities will prosecute Ms. Khuon Sophal and her accomplices.” Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #524, 7.11.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Saturday, 7 November 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #330, 7.11.2009

  • The Court Sentenced a Man [Mr. Ruos Sokhet, a journalist of The Globe magazine] Who Threatened Mr. Soy Sopheap to Serve Two Years in Prison [for distributing disinformation by sending disparaging telephone text messages to the president of the Cambodia Television Network and to the director of Deum Ampil, Mr. Soy Sopheap]
  • Samdech Krom Preah [Norodom Ranariddh] Said He Wants to Get Divorced, while Princess Marie Said She Does Not [he appeared at the court as plaintiff over his divorce case without the presence of Princess Marie]
  • The Number of People Infected with the A/H1N1 Virus Increased to 313, while the Number of Deaths Remains at Four [in Cambodia]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2092, 7.11.2009

  • Cambodian and Siamese [Thai] Army Commanders Promised Not to Interfere in the Diplomatic Dispute [between the two governments]
  • A [Vietnamese] Man Tried to Rape His [Vietnamese] Girlfriend, then Killed Her by Breaking Her Neck and Threw Her Body into a River [he was arrested – Kompong Chhnang]
  • America Will Not Withdraw Sanctions against Myanmar [if the generals in Myanmar, who hold power, do not make noticeable improvements toward democratic reforms]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #524, 7.11.2009

  • The Appeals Court Delayed Hearing on Chea Ratha’s Case for the Second Time
  • The King Asked Mr. Hun Sen to Check a Request to Pardon Mr. Hang Chakra [the editor-in-chief of Khmer Machas Srok who was convicted to serve one year in prison for disinformation]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6799, 7.11.2009

  • The Cambodian Ambassador Returned to Cambodia through the Poipet Border Crossing; Siam [Thailand] Warned They May Close the Border Crossings if the Dispute Continues
  • A [female] Garment Worker Died of an Electric Shock in the Golden Mile Factory [Phnom Penh]
  • The United Nations Evacuates Its Staff [of about 600] from Afghanistan [because of violent and bloody attacks at their living places during the last week by Taliban forces]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5041, 7.11.2009

  • Thailand Announced to Cancel the Agreements [on joint development] for Overlapping Zones [rich in gas and oil – according to The Nation] while Cambodia Said that this Is against International Law [as there is no point in the agreement mentioning a decision to cancel the agreement unilaterally]
  • A Draft Decree Relating to Mandatory Military Service Was Approved during a Session of the Council of Ministers [it deals with the conditions of the census, the selection, call-up, and the delay for youth that are busy with studies; in special cases there may be exemptions, while the authorities are starting to implement mandatory military services]
  • Car Hit Two Motorbikes, Killing Two People and Seriously Injuring One [no information given about the arrest of the perpetrating teenage driver – Phnom Penh]

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Bangkok Got Angry and Downgraded the Cambodian-Thai Diplomatic Relations to the Lowest Level – Friday, 6.11.2009

Posted on 7 November 2009. Filed under: Week 637 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 637

“Immediately after the Cambodian government appointed Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra as Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen’s and the government’s adviser, Bangkok was angry and summoned its ambassador back to Thailand as a so-called diplomatic retaliation. The Thai ambassador left Cambodia in the night of 5 November 2009. In response, the Minister of the Council of Ministers, Deputy Prime Minister Sok An, summoned the Cambodian ambassador to return to Phnom Penh. He considers that this is a normal reciprocity measure between government and government. Regarding this diplomatic dispute, there has not been any new report about border tensions between the two countries.

“Relating to Thailand recalling its ambassador, Mr. Sok An said that this is not the cutting off of diplomatic ties. When Thailand sends its ambassador to Cambodia again, we will send our ambassador to Thailand. He explained that there is no problem in the relations between both countries’ citizens and in commerce.

“He noted that Thailand did so, following a demand from the yellow-shirt group [of government supporters].

“He explained also that it is an internal affairs of Cambodia to nominate Thaksin Shinawatra, and Cambodia had appointed foreigners as advisers before, for example the current president of South Korea. He had also been an adviser of Samdech Dekchor.

“He criticized that Thailand has hurt Cambodia by sending troops to invade the Preah Vihear border areas in Cambodian territory. The second point is that when Cambodia proposed to list the Preah Vihear Temple as a world heritage site, Thailand had sent partisans to disturb it.

“Contrastingly, [Thai] Deputy Prime Minister Sutheb Thaugsuban asked, ‘What would Cambodia think if Thailand nominated [the opposition party president] Mr. Sam Rainsy as adviser?’ Mr. Sok An answered, ‘Cambodia would welcome such a nomination, because Cambodia has a citizen appointed by foreign country. Therefore, Thai people should be happy as one of their citizens is named adviser.’

“The decision of the Bangkok government to summon their diplomatic official like this, pushed the diplomatic ties between both countries to fall to a terrible level, threatening even political, economic, and cultural relation between both countries, as well as the solidarity in ASEAN.

“Prime Minister Abhisit Vijjajiva said that Thailand summoned their ambassador back to Bangkok as a sign of first diplomatic retaliation toward Cambodia for appointing Thaksin Shinawara as adviser, and for rejecting to extradite him. He said that Thailand wants Cambodia to know the dissatisfaction of the Thai people.

“Immigration officials at the Phnom Penh International Airport said that the Thai ambassador boarded the plane at around 9:00 p.m. to travel back to Bangkok.

“Political analysts said that the decision of the Bangkok government will make ASEAN to be viewed as a quite fractioned institution, making the initative to establish the ASEAN community by 2015 to be in hazard, and it is necessary that there is a regional mechanism to restore the situation.

Cambodian Troops Are Prepared to Defend the Country from an Invasion

“At the border, the commander of special Intervention Unit 3, Mr. Srey Dek, said that the Cambodian troops are always on alert. He added, ‘If they dare to enter only half a millimeter, we will attack (open fire) immediately. But he said that so far, there is nothing abnormal.

“The Banteay Meanchey governor, Mr. Ung Oeung, said that the border situation remains normal. But there might be some psychological war coming relating to border closings. But there is nothing visible yet.

Thaksin Is Happy while Abhisit Is Pale

“The Thai former prime minister, Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra, said on Thursday that he accepted the position as economic adviser of the Royal Government of Cambodia, and he expressed appreciation toward Prime Minister Hun Sen for offering this honorable position. He said on his website, ‘I can refresh my brain while I am not yet able to serve the Thai people. I will ask for the permission from Thai people to provide economic advice to the Cambodian government, based on the appointment by King Sihamoni, until I can go back to my country. In fact, I have already become adviser of a government. I accept this position in order to keep my brain to remain fresh, otherwise it would become lame if I don’t keep it up to obtain new ideas and new developments. I want to work with the Thai people, but I cannot. The Thai government does not even allow me to carry a Thai passport.’

“Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra added, ‘Our neighbor is not an enemy. We must be close to each other forever. It is good that we are friends.’

“In the mean time, a legal adviser of Mr. Thaksin, [the former minister of foreign affairs who resigned after the high court found he had violated the Thai constitution] Mr. Noppadon Pattama, spoke to the former prime minister, regarding the issue that Thaksin Shinawatra feels that he has received a great honor, and he will provide advice on how to solve Cambodia’s economic problems and overcome poverty.

“Mr. Noppadon Pattama added that it is not necessary that Mr. Thaksin comes to live in Cambodia, because he can give advice through the telephone or the Internet. He said, ‘Thaksin Shinawatra has no plan to go to Cambodia at this time. Therefore, the government needs not worry or feel afraid, because it is not a political affair or seeking asylum. Mr. Hun Sen decided to appoint Thaksin, because he sees his value and ability.’

“Nevertheless, Thailand does not understand it as Mr. Noppadon does. On 5 November 2009, Thailand summoned their ambassador back to their country immediately as a move of disapproval of Cambodia for offering a position to Thaksin.

“The Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vijjajiva said to journalist, ‘We have summoned our ambassador as the first diplomatic retaliation toward the Cambodian government so as to let the Thai people’s dissatisfaction known. The announcement of the Cambodian governments disrespects the legal system, and does influence the feeling of the Thai public.

“Abhisit said also that [Thai] aid for Cambodia will be suspended also, but the border between both countries are still open, and the relations between the people will not be affected.” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5040, 6.11.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Friday, 6 November 2009

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2091, 6.11.2009

  • Cambodia and Thailand Decided to Downgrade Their Diplomatic Ties; [the Thai ousted prime minister] Thaksin Shinawatra Thanks Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen after He Was Nominated Adviser
  • Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen Will Attract More Japanese Investors to Cambodia [during his visit to attend the Mekong-Japan summit in Tokyo on 6 and 7 November 2009]
  • Sihanoukville Governor, Mr. Sbang Sarath Was Accused because of Illegal Constructions

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #523, 6.11.2009

  • The Khmer Government Rejected the Demand of Siam [Thailand] to Control Two Thirds of Seabed Mineral Resources
  • The Sam Rainsy Party: The Prime Minister Does Not Deal with the Existing Internal Affairs of Cambodia, but Thinks about Siamese [Thai] Issues

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6798, 6.11.2009

  • The Thai Prime Minister [Mr. Abhisit Vijjajiva] Summoned the [Thai] Ambassador Back, to Leave Cambodia, and He Opposes Thaksin Shinawatra’s Nomination [as Prime Minister Hun Sen’s and the governments economic adviser]
  • The Appeal Court Will Hold a Hearing This Morning over the Acid Attack Case [where the actress In Soklida’s aunt was attacked]
  • [More than 200] Romorque Motos [and Tuk-Tuk] Drivers Protested in Front of the Municipality to Demand a Delay to Make Number Plates and to Fine Them
  • A Man like an Animal Raped Three Daughters Two Times Each [he was arrested – Sihanoukville]
  • Within More Than One Week, Four People Were Killed by Murderers [four perpetrators were arrested – Battambang]

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer Edition], Vol.1, #40, 6.11.2009

  • The Diplomatic War between Cambodia and Thailand Regarding Thaksin Shinawatra’s Case Leads to the Withdrawal of the Respective Ambassadors
  • The Government Explained the Increase of the Military Budget [from US$223 million in 2009 to US$277 million in 2010 to civil society organizations, saying that the budget will be used to strengthen the national defense capacity in order to improve the military sector in Cambodia; however, civil society representatives said that the government should address root problems in the military sector, rather than increase the budget]
  • Mr. Sam Rainsy Announced to Lodge Complaints [at international institutions, against neighboring countries] over the Loss of Territory

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5040, 6.11.2009

  • The Khmer Rouge Tribunal Announced Places in 19 Cities and Provinces for Investigations over the Case 002 [involving five Khmer Rouge leaders: Ieng Sary, Ieng Thirith, Khieu Samphan, and Nuon Chea]
  • More Than 300 ATM Machines of Different Banks Have Been Set Up in Cambodia
  • Guards of Fishing Lot Number 10 Shot a Man to Death [two perpetrators were arrested and police is seeking to arrest another guard – Kampong Chhnang]
  • Wild Animals [67 turtles and 22 pythons] Loaded in a Car from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh Were Seized by Moung Russey District Police [the car driver was arrested – Battambang]

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Report of the National Audit Authority Does Not Show the Amount of Lost Money – Thursday, 5.11.2009

Posted on 6 November 2009. Filed under: Week 637 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 637

“At the Hotel Cambodiana there was a press conference organized by the National Audit Authority on 30 October 2009, to present an audit report about the management of public finances, which had been checked from 2002 to 2009. But the report was only for 2006.

“The general auditor, Mr. Ut Chhon, stated in the conference that this report only s negatives, but he did not respond in detail to questions of journalists like: ‘According to the audit results, how much money was lost by corruption each year?’

“During the conference, which lasted for several hours to share information through the report presented, there were four main points, which included 12 important items about resource management and the audit results included. Those important points are the same mentioned also in a book of 100 points in a report written by the Sam Rainsy Party in 2003.

“The report speaks about tax on unused land, which is in line with the policy of the Sam Rainsy Party. As a result of the audit it was found that there were many cases where tax was not paid for unused land, while several companies received concession land from the government of more than one million hectares, where the state has not set appropriate costs for leasing this land.

“The report speaks about this point, stressing that the Ministry of Agriculture, on behalf of the whole government, had signed agreements with more than 70 companies from 1992 to 2006, to provide more than one million hectares of concession land for development, and most agreements were made, deciding that the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Economy and Finance are responsible for assessing and for setting the costs for leasing of the land. But by 2007, the assessment and setting of costs for leasing this concession land was not fully implemented in accordance with the above decision. The Ministry of Economy and Finance agreed with the audit report on this point.

“The National Audit Authority, established in 2000 ,started to work in 2002, and has worked by now for seven years. But this institution has only just now released a report, and the opinions was expressed that it was released to satisfy what donors want. Anyway, the auditor general, Mr. Ut Chhon, told journalists that the release of the report is done based on the will of the government, not because of pressure from any other country.

“Mr. Ut Chhon added that the audit of the working team had discovered some problems, like at some tax institutions, collecting taxes at the border, and monitoring and assessing the tax to be demanded for goods loaded in containers by some companies – this was difficult, and the assessment of tax collection covers only about 25%.

“He spoke also about the management of state property, and about the licensing of ownership of state property, where many of such cases occur in cities and provinces countrywide.

“According to the report consisting of more than 500 cases, it is said that corruption led to the loss of much state resources.

“When asked whether the general auditor can assess how much tax was lost every year, Mr. Ut Chhon said that he cannot say anything, and that every country is the same. But he added that only England made the amount of the lost money publicly known.

“At the end of the conference, Mr. Ut Chhon said that he expects that the release of this report will promote better relation between the public and the National Audit Authority, in order to ease the work of his institution in the future.

“However, what the national and the international public want is to know the amount of money missed because of corruption, and they want to see that the results of the audit explicitly identify negative points, especially about the loss of national resources.

“Recently, the US Ambassador in Phnom Penh, Ms. Carol Rodley, said that corruption in Cambodia amounts to a loss of state resource of about US$500 million each year. This speech had invited strong reactions from government officials.

“Analysts said that the National Audit Authority released the report just to satisfy donors.” Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #521-522, 31-5.10-11.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Thursday, 5 November 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #325-328, 31-5.10-11.2009

  • Cambodia Appointed [Thai ousted prime minister] Thaksin as Prime Minister’s Economic Advisor [on 27 October 2009]
  • Thai Parliamentarians Had Arguments over Thaksin’s Case [about the extradition to send him back if he comes to Cambodia]
  • 25,000 Condoms Will Be Distributed to Boat Racers [during the Water Festival]
  • The Government Provides US$4 Million to Set Up Pumping Machines to Pump [flood] Water from the Russey Keo District [Phnom Penh]
  • Cambodia Will Build a Nine-Storey Hospital [near the Calmette Hospital offering high standard health services with help from Denmark]
  • On the Second Day [of the Water Festival] a Boat Racer Died after a Boat Sank; the Audience Is Careful about the A/H1N1 Virus [Phnom Penh]
  • A Police Official [and another man] Raped a Virgin and Compensated Her With Only One Million Riel [approx. US$250; so they were not sent to court to be convicted – Phnom Penh]
  • The National Independence Day This Year Will Be Celebrated on 8 October [rather than on the normal 9 November in order to help the King attend the event – according the Permanent Organizing Commission for National and International Ceremonies]
  • Police and Fishery Officials Put the Blame on Each Other for Arresting Fishermen to Extort Money [Kompong Thom]
  • Cambodia Will Increase the Military Budget to US$277 Million in 2010 [while in 2009, it was US$223 million]
  • American Economy Grew by 3.5% in the Third Quarter [according to AFP]
  • 187 Countries Demands the USA to Withdraw the Ban of Transportation to Cuba

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2086, 31.10.2009

  • World Bank: The Asian Economy Recovers [because of timely stimulating resources made available by some countries like China and South Korea], but in Cambodia, there Is No Imprevement Yet
  • Cambodia Confirmed Again Not to Extradite [the ousted former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra to Thailand [if he comes to Cambodia]
  • A Danish Man Was Arrested in Poipet for Having Sexual Relationships with Many Young Girls
  • Three Orphans Were Tortured by the Director of an [orphan] Center, They Were Found with Marks on their Bodies [he was arrested – Kandal]
  • A Trach Tree Fell on a Poor House [because of strong wind], Killing Two People [a mother and her daughter] and Injuring Three [Mondolkiri]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #521, 31.10.2009

  • Report of the National Audit Authority Does Not Show the Amount of Lost Money
  • The Impact from Sand Dredging to Fill the Boeng Kak Lake Killed a Man and His Four Sons from an Electric Shock in the Sewage System [the electricity got into the water and shocked the man when he waded through the water in his house; then the children were also electrocuted when they waded through the water to help their father, thinking he had fainted and fallen because of fainting]
  • Yuth Phouthang Was Replaced as Koh Kong Governor [by the Srae Ambel district governor, Mr. Bun Leut] while [Phnom Penh Municipal Governor] Kep Chuktema Is Also Facing to Be Replaced [according to a person who asked not to be named]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6793, 31-1.10-11.2009

  • A Siamese [Thai] Court Sentenced Twelve Khmer Citizens to Serve Five to Eight Years in Prison for Entering Thai Territory to Cut Trees [Cambodia will appeal]
  • A Khmer Citizen Was Shot, Injured, and Arrested while Six Others Managed to Escape Back to Their Village [they climbed the Dangrek Mountains to cut trees – a local official said that they were in an the area where there are not yet border markers set up]
  • A Tragedy Happened at a Flooded House, Where a Man and Four Children Were Electrocuted [because of flooding] while His Wife and the Another Son Were Seriously Injured [Russey Keo district, Phnom Penh]
  • The Audit Authority Wants to See Income and Expense Outside of the National Treasury, Especially Foreign Aid, to Be Checked Thoroughly
  • Man Raped His Daughter and Another Man Rapped His Niece – Both Girls Are Six Years Old [both men were arrested – Banteay Meanchey]
  • The Authorities Lodged a Complaint at a Court against Mr. Sam Rainsy for Removing Temporary Wooden Cambodian-Vietnamese Border Markers

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer Edition], Vol.1, #38, 4.10.2009

  • The Water Festival Finished Successfully, but the Number of Visitors Declined [to about one million] Compared to Last Year [because of economic problems of the people and because of the typhoon Ketasana]
  • South Korea Grants More Than US$200,000 [to Cambodia] to Restore Damages Caused by the Typhoon

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5035-503, 31.10.2009

  • [Thai ousted prime minister] Thaksin Reduced Tension [between Cambodia and Thailand] by Saying that He Will not Come to Cambodia
  • The Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology Informs that the Rain in the Rainy Season Has Come to an End
  • Asian Development Bank: Cambodia Is Among 19 Countries where More Than 10% of the Population [of about 14 million in Cambodia] Live in Poverty
  • The National Assembly of Cambodia Will Ask the “Duma” – the Parliament of Russia – to Encourage the Russian Government to Cancel the US$1.5 Billion Debt That Cambodia Owes
  • Because he Got Jealous, a Man Attacked His Wife with a Khvev [a long handled knife] and Cut Her Throat to Kill Her [he was arrested – Kos Krolor District, Battambang]
  • [Hundreds of] Thai Demonstrators Demanded that Their Government Closes the Border Crossings, and Recall their Ambassador from Cambodia [because Cambodia does not agree to withdraw the Cambodian troops and villagers from the contested 4.6 square km area around the Preah Vihear Temple]
  • [The president of the Sam Rainsy Party] Sam Rainsy Denied that He Removed the Wooden Border Markers [and said that local citizens did it – according to the cabinet of the Sam Rainsy Party]
  • A Man Lured a [14-year-old] Girl to Rape Her Seven Times [he was arrested – Battambang]
  • A Buddhist Elder Raped a Six-Year-Old Girl [he was arrested – Battambang]
  • A Tropical Storm Killed at Least 57 People in Vietnam

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Opposition Party Parliamentarians and Civil Society Officials Stated that the Government Does Not Implement the Constitution – Friday, 30.10.2009

Posted on 31 October 2009. Filed under: Week 636 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 636

“On the occasion of the 5th Coronation Day of Preah Karuna Samdech Preah Boromneath Norodom Sihamoni, high ranking officials from the opposition parties, who are parliamentarians, and national and international observers, pointed to the Cambodian government’s obligation and need to implement the supreme law of the country by creating and reforming at least two institutions of Cambodia.

“A parliamentarian from the Sam Rainsy Party, Mr. Son Chhay, agrees with the idea of an international observer, Mr. Lao Mong Hay, and of a civil society official of Cambodia as well of a parliamentarian [from the Human Rights Party], Mr. Kem Sokha over the duty that the King at present fulfills, especially the idea that the government must create and progress two supreme institutions led by the King.

From the Constitution of the Kingdom of Cambodia

Article 23:
The King is the Supreme Commander of the Royal Khmer Armed Forces. A Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Khmer Armed Forces shall be appointed to command the Armed Forces.

Article 24:
The King shall serve as Chairman of the Supreme Council of National Defense to be established by law.

“Mr. Son Chhay, a leader of the Sam Rainsy parliamentarians, said, ‘I hope that Cambodia will in the future create a Supreme Council of National Defense which, according to the Constitution, must be under the presidency of the King with the role as Chairman of that Supreme Council of National Defense.’

“Mr. Son Chhay agreed with a statement of a senior researcher of the Asian Human Rights Commission based in Hong Kong, Mr. Lao Mong Hay, in this point.

“Dr. Lao Mong Hay sees an obligation of the government, as stipulated in the Constitution of Cambodia, to create a Supreme Council of National Defense with the King as Chairman. So far, according to a statement of Mr. Lao Mong Hay, the government formed by the Cambodian People’s Party, with Mr. Hun Sen as the Prime Minister, has not discussed the creation of a Supreme Council of National Defense under the oversight by the King.

“Everything in the defense sector is seen being organized and decided directly by Prime Minister Hun Sen. This leads to criticism that the defense system of Cambodia is not conform with the Constitution of the country, which states the need to establish a Supreme Council of National Defense led by the King.

“The founder of the Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights (LICADHO) – a large human rights organization in Cambodia, Ms. Pong Chhiv Kek [also known as Dr. Kek Galabru], said that in the five years since the coronation of Preah Karuna Preah Bath Norodom Sihamoni, it is seen by the public that in general, he cares for humanitarian affairs for his citizens. She expressed her concern related to a point of the Constitution which says that the King takes the thrown, but does not take the power.

From the Constitution of the Kingdom of Cambodia

Article 7:
The King of Cambodia shall reign but shall not govern.
The King shall be the Head of State for life. The King shall be inviolable.

Article 8:
The King of Cambodia shall be a symbol of unity and eternity of the nation.
The King shall be guarantor of the national independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity of the Kingdom of Cambodia, the protector of rights and freedom for all citizens and the guarantor of international treaties.

“Ms. Pong Chhiv Kek said, ‘I regret that the Constitution states that the King reigns, but is not involved in political affairs, so that he could fulfill many other duties according to the constitution.’

“The Constitution of Cambodia stipulates that the King of Cambodia shall reign but shall not govern, though, according to another article, it makes the King responsible for the territorial integrity of Cambodia, for the protection of the rights and the freedom for all citizens, and for an independent court system, though he does not have the power to decide anything, and can only be burdened by the mistakes decided upon by the government.

“A parliamentarian and president of the Human Rights Party, Mr. Kem Sokha, noted also the point in the Constitution which states that the King must not be involved in politics, and that the King does not have power, as at present, the power is controlled by the government. According to his opinion, the King should be given the possibility to ensure the respect for human rights and the independence of the court system, as well as the right to pardon journalists and human rights activists who are jailed by government authorities. He stressed that at present, unless there is request from the government, the King does not decide to an amnesty, but Mr. Kem Sokha thinks that the government should not prevent the King from granting an amnesty.

From the Constitution of the Kingdom of Cambodia

Article 27:
The King shall have the right to grant partial or complete amnesty.

“Senior politicians from the opposition parties and from civil society organization official expressed their ideas under the impression that the King seems to be restricted in fulfilling his duties which are stated as his rights, as stated in the Constitution, to help his people.

“Besides expressing good wishes to the King at the 5th Coronation Day after he succeeded his father, some scholars want to see the country’s Constitution implemented properly by the government, like by organizing the National Congress, which, as stated by the supreme law of Cambodia, is to be held annually under the chairmanship of the King. It is an event to remember the National Congress held by the current King’s father, Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk, to provide an opportunity for the citizens to express their concerns, hopes, and wishes, as well as to question the prime minister about how the country is ruled, while now, the Cambodian People’s Party government, especially Prime Minister Hun Sen, said that it is not possible to hold such a congress.

From the Constitution of the Kingdom of Cambodia

Article :
Article 147:
The National Congress shall enable the people to be directly informed on various matters of national interests and to raise issues and requests for the State authority to solve.
Khmer citizens of both sexes shall have the right to participate in the National Congress.
Article 148:
The National Congress shall meet once a year in early December at the convocation of the Prime Minister.
It shall proceed under the chairmanship of the King.
Article 149:
The National Congress adopts recommendations to the Senate and the National Assembly, and to the Executive branch for reflection.
The organization and operation of the National Congress should be determined by law.

“But according to the Sam Rainsy Party and the Human Right Party, and to national and international observers, the government could do what is stated in the Constitution, if the government had a real intention to do it.” Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #520, 30.10.2009

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Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Friday, 30 October 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #323, 29.10.2009

  • About 20% of Cambodian Citizens Live under the Threat of Food Insecurity [because of the rising prices of food, the economic crisis, and natural disaster which bring more burden; according to an under-secretary of state of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries]
  • The Number of People Who Died from A/H1N1 Infection Increased to 4, and there Are 239 Infected People
  • This Year, 391 Boats and 25,501 Boat Racers Will Join for the Competitions [at the Water Festival]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2085, 29.10.2009

  • [The Thai ousted prime minister] Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra Plans to Come to Cambodia Soon to Thank Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen [but a date has not yet been specified; according to the Bangkok Post]

Khmer Amatak, Vol.3, #668, 29.10.2009

  • [The Sam Rainsy Party parliamentarian] Mu Sochua Continues to Seek Justice [over a defamation sentence] at the Supreme Court, before Paying a Fine [Riel 16.5 million, approx. US$4,100] to [Prime Minister] Hun Sen

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #520, 30.10.2009

  • Opposition Party Parliamentarians and Civil Society Officials Stated that the Government Does Not Implement the Constitution

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6792, 30.10.2009

  • Reaction from the Cambodian Embassy: The Nation Makes Nonsense and Makes Itself Disreputable [a response to an editorial of the Thai newspaper, The Nation, published on 25 October 2009, claiming that some words in that editorial insulted Prime Minister Hun Sen, by saying, ‘You can take a man out of the forest, but you cannot take the forest from that man…’]
  • A Man Who Threatened Mr. Soy Sopheap [a CTN television presenter and the director of Deum Ampil] via Phone Was Detained [Phnom Penh]

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer Edition], Vol.1, #36-37, 29-30.10.2009

  • Orphanages Care for More Than 10,000 Children [at present there are 221 orphanages, 21 of them belong to the state]
  • The Government Will Provide Social Concession Land [more than 20,000 hectares] to Veterans and Families of Dead Militants
  • Among 100 Real Estate Companies, Only 38 Have Licenses [the unlicensed companies will be charged Riel 5 million, approx. US$1,250]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5033-5034, 29-30.10.2009

  • The Appeals Court Decided to Uphold the Conviction of the [Sam Rainsy Party parliamentarian] Ms. Mu Sochua for Defamation against the Prime Minister [though her defamation suit against the Prime Minister had not been dealt with by the court
  • Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen Asked the United Nations to Assist in Overcoming the Impacts of the Typhoon Ketsana
  • A French Delegation Will Visit Cambodia at the End of This Month [to strengthen the Cambodian-French friendship]

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The Case That a Military Police Officer Drove a Lexus Over a Young Girl’s Head Killing Her in Ang Snuol Was Not Solved According to the Law – Monday, 26.10.2009

Posted on 27 October 2009. Filed under: Week 636 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 636

“Kandal: A military police officer who drove a Lexus and killed a girl in Baek Chan commune in Ang Snuol District was detained for a short period and was then released, after there had been a request from his unit.

“The perpetrating car was confiscated and kept at the Kandal Police station to solve it as a civil case with a compensation for the victim’s family according to the law.

“It should be noted that at 8:30 on 22 October 2009, there was a traffic accident on National Road 4 in Trapaeng Sang village, Baek Chan commune, Ang Snuol district, Kandal, where a Lexus car hit a girl driving a motorcycle from the opposite direction, killing her immediately.

“The driver of the car, Thong Sienglong, 35, a National Military Police officer, was arrested, after he had tried to escape, driving more than 7 km. Both the driver and the car were sent immediately to the Kandal Police station for further action.

“The victim, a girl, Theng Socheata, 17, was a student living in Proh Tala village, Kravan commune, Chbar Mon district, Kompong Speu. The car run over her head, breaking her skull so that her brain was spilled, killing her immediately at the site of the accident. The victim drove a 2008 C125 Honda, from west to east. The car drove from east to west at high speed, and at that moment, another motorbike crossed the road from south to north, hitting her motorbike so that she fell down, and the Lexus car run immediately over the girl, killing her.

“The Kandal police chief, Mr. Eav Chamroen, said on 24 October 2009 that the driver was released in the evening of the day of the accident, on 22 October, after he and his car had been sent to the police station. He added that the reason, why the driver was not sent to the court, was because he is a National Military Police officer and his unit had come to request to release him. The car is still kept, until a compensation is arranged for the victim’s family. He said, ‘If an agreement cannot be reached, we will send this case to the court.’

“He added, ‘This case has not yet been sent to the court, because we still conduct further investigations. After checking the site of the accident, we found that the motorbike fell into the car’s lane, and therefore this accident was the unintentional result.’

“Mr. Eav Chamroen went on to say, ‘By law, if a person hits someone to death, the car owner must compensate the victim. But if the car owner does not provide compensation, we will send the case to the court to be solved according to the law.’

“He continued to say that the police is investigating, to find the driver of the motorbike that hit the girl’s motorbike so that she fell down, where then the car run over her and killed her. ‘This is an unintentional case.’

“According to court official, this traffic accident has not yet been reported to the court. But the court knows about the release of the driver.

“The same official added that in case of a traffic accident happening, if the driver is arrested, the police must send both the driver and the car as evidence to the court to take action, but not to release them quickly at a police station’.” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5030, 25-26.10.2009

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Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Monday, 26 October 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #320, 25-26.10.2009

  • The Exchange of Questions between the Cambodian and Siamese [Thai] Leaders about Thaksin Shinawatra Was the Most Interesting Issue during the ASEAN Summit [considered in the Thai press as a war of words]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2081, 25-26.10.2009

  • Monks and a Gang of Teens Bought Wine for Drinking at a Pagoda, Leading to Quarrel and Fighting, Killing One and Wounding Five [Phnom Penh]
  • The Prampi Makara District Police Does Not Allow Journalists to Enter to Collect Information like Before [police seem to be afraid that journalists know too much, like in the case of illegal interventions to release offenders secretly, claiming higher orders – Phnom Penh]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #517, 25-27.10.2009

  • The Unrepresented Nations and Peoples’ Organizations Are Trying to Help Khmer Kampuchea Krom People to Have a Human Rights Representative in Yuon [Vietnam]
  • Mr. Sam Rainsy Reacts against Mr. Hun Sen’s Accusation [that he used his recent presence at Thailand at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club to attack the Cambodian government – Mr. Sam Rainsy said that he has spoken about the situation of Cambodia also in other countries]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6788, 26.10.2009

  • The Cambodian Senior Delegation Returned from the ASEAN Summit, but Cambodian-Thai Issues Were Not Covered during the Press Briefing
  • A Truck Loaded with a Container Struck a Tourist Car on National Road 33, Killing Two People and Seriously Injuring Four [Kampot]
  • ASEAN Asked Burma to Conduct Free Elections

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5030, 25-26.10.2009

  • The Case That a Military Police Officer Drove a Lexus Over a Young Girl’s Head Killing Her in Ang Snuol Was Not Solved According to the Law
  • The Thai King Appeared in Public Again after He Had Entered a Hospital
  • A Scandal Exploded at the Tep Nimeth Pagoda where a Thai [62-year-old] Monk Was Arrested for Child Debauchery [he had sexual relationships with many Cambodian children – Koh Kong]

Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.17, #1815, 26.10.2009

  • [Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation] Hor Namhong: Cambodia Is Not Afraid of [Thai] Yellow Shirt Demonstrators’ Threats [demanding the Cambodian government to withdraw troops and villagers from the disputed area near the Preah Vihear Temple within seven days, otherwise they will demonstrate to surround the Khmer Embassy in Thailand]

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Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha Consider the New Demonstration Law as a Constraint on the Power of the People of Cambodia – Thursday, 22.10.2009

Posted on 23 October 2009. Filed under: Week 635 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 635

“The National Assembly has adopted a demonstration law limiting demonstrations to not more than 200 people. This law is considered by the opposition parties as a restriction of the power of the people in Cambodia. However, government representative claimed that this new law helps maintain social stability.

“During the session of the National Assembly yesterday, 21 October 2009, 76 parliamentarians out of 101 raised their hands to adopt this demonstration law, while the parliamentarians from the Sam Rainsy Party and from the Human Rights Party did not.

“Mr. Sam Rainsy told reporters in the morning of 21 October 2009, ‘At present the government cares only about cracking down on demonstrations and wants to eliminate the right of citizens who have reasons to protest.’ The people will get angry and feel pain when they want to present what they demand, but cannot do it though their demands are right. The government does not solve the citizens needs, but wants to intercept their presention.

“Mr. Sam Rainsy stressed that the Sam Rainsy Party wants to organize the country rightly, to eliminate the root causes of demonstrations, but the government just eliminates the demonstrations. Regarding the law limiting the number of people to only 200 to participate in a demonstration, Mr. Sam Rainsy said that it is a ban anticipating the expression of the power of the people in Cambodia.

“Mr. Sam Rainsy said, ‘They do not want that large scale demonstrations can be held. If large scale demonstrations are held, the state fears the power of the people. People take power to control the country to serve the real benefit of the people, but not to serve the benefit of any dictatorial party or any dictators or their groups.’

“Mr. Sam Rainsy said that the Sam Rainsy Party does not support this law, as it has gaps which the state could use as a pretext to prevent people from demonstrating peacefully. It abolishes citizens’ right to express their opinions through peaceful demonstrations.

“The president of the Human Rights Party, Mr. Kem Sokha, spoke to journalists expressing the same view as Mr. Sam Rainsy: that this demonstration law banishes people’s power in Cambodia, especially when citizens want to demonstrate to demand that leaders resign from their positions. He said, ‘For example, citizens may want to demonstrate over politics… to demand that some leaders resign.’

“Mr. Kem Sokha added that in countries that practice democracy, people can hold demonstrations to demand that some leaders leave their positions – which is called people’s power. While in Cambodia, it is now to be assumed that the Ministry of Interior will not allow this kind of manifestation, using the reasoning that it might be against national security, or against safety and public order. These are pretexts that governments use to prevent the people from demonstrating. Mr. Kem Sokha said that also the Sam Rainsy Party parliamentarians do not support this law.

“When asked whether this law interdicts people’s power or not, Mr. Kem Sokha said, ‘Of course. We see the direction. After we heard the words of the parliamentarians of the ruling party, it seems that they are afraid of the power of the people.

“A democratic regime is a regime where power can be changed peacefully, and leaders are established through general elections. But if the elected leaders act against what they had promised, citizens can demonstrate for a change of power.

“An investigating official of the Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights (LICADHO), Mr. Oum Sam Ath, said that limiting the number of people who can participate in a demonstration is not right for a country that practices democracy.

“This demonstration law also requires demonstration leaders to inform the authorities in advance, and Mr. Oum Sam Ath explained that the need to request for a permission, and this 5-days in advance, requires then to wait to see whether the demonstration is permitted or not – which is a new restriction, including the limitation of the number of demonstrators. This law is not according to the concept of democracy.

“However, a representative from the Ministry of Interior claimed during the session of the National Assembly since a few days ago that this law ensures social stability.

“A secretary of state of the Ministry of Interior, Mr. Nuth Sa An, said that the Ministry will ask the government to develop a policy how to publicize this law among the citizens.

“Though this law limits the number of people to 200 who can join a demonstration, Mr. Sam Rainsy said that this is not acceptable, and the Sam Rainsy Party plans to hold big demonstrations in the future. Mr. Sam Rainsy said that a planned big demonstration – though a specific date has not yet been set – is a demonstration to assemble tens of thousands of citizens victimized by land disputes from the provinces and cities countrywide.

“It should be noted that people’s power exists in many countries in the world, like in the Philippines, in Siam [Thailand], and in Indonesia.” Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #514, 22.10.2009

Note:

Constitution of the Kingdom of Cambodia

Article 51:
The Kingdom of Cambodia adopts a policy of Liberal Democracy and Pluralism.
The Cambodian people are the masters of their own country.
All power belongs to the people. The people exercise these powers through the National Assembly, The Senate, the Royal Government and the Judiciary.
The legislative, executive, and judicial powers shall be separate.

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Thursday, 22 October 2009

Areyathor, Vol.16, #1416, 22.10.2009

  • Three Korean Men Raped a Karaoke Parlor Woman in a Room while She Was Drunk [they were arrested – Siem Reap]

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #317, 22.10.2009

  • [Prime Minister] Hun Sen Shows the Green Light to Receive [Thai ousted prime minister] Thaksin Shinawatra and He Prepared a Residence [in Cambodia] for Him as a Friend
  • The Number of People Confirmed with A/H1N1 Has Increased to 202 Cases, and the Number of Deaths Remain at Three
  • The Iranian Government Asked to Step Up Cooperation with Cambodia [especially between the parliaments of the two countries – according to the Iranian ambassador to Cambodia]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2078, 22.10.2009

  • 143 Countries Promised to Support the Cambodian Candidacy as a Member of the World Heritage Committee
  • A House Was Burnt Down Completely because the Firefighter Trucks Did Not Come, though They Had Been Called [Siem Reap]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #514, 22.10.2009

  • Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha Consider the New Demonstration Law as a Constraint on the Power of the People of Cambodia

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer edition], Vol.1, #31, 22.10.2009

  • The Civil Aviation Authorities Will Write a Letter to the Government to Permit Siem Reap Airways to Fly Again
  • Cambodia Cannot Sell Rice to the Philippines this Year [because there is high local demand after typhoon Ketsana hit Cambodia]
  • Burma Rejects Request [of ASEAN] to Release Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi [Burmese elected democracy leader]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5027, 22.10.2009

  • Prime Minister Samdech [Hun Sen]: Mr. Thaksin Can Come to Cambodia Anytime He wants and I Prepare a House to Welcome Him
  • Exclusive Interview of Rasmei Kampuchea with the South Korean President, Lee Myung-Bak [he said ‘Samdech Hun Sen cares very much about the development of the Cambodian economy, and both of us have similar views and intentions on many problems;’ the investment by Korea in Cambodia increased 75 times within 12 years from 1997 to 2009; Mr. Lee Myung-Bak is a close friend of Prime Minister Hun Sen, and he had been nominated as advisor to Mr. Hun Sen in 2000]
  • Cambodia Reacts against some Thai Members of Parliament for Suggesting to Prevent Cambodia from Becoming a Member of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee

Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.17, #1813, 22.10.2009

  • A Promise Was Made Again [by government officials from the Cambodian People’s Party] to Adopt an Anti-Corruption Law by the Middle of Next Year

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Cambodia Signed Two Investment Projects Worth US$60 Million during the Inauguration of the China-ASEAN Expo – Wednesday, 21.10.2009

Posted on 22 October 2009. Filed under: Week 635 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 635

“Nanning: The 6th China-ASEAN Expo – CAEXPO [第六届中国—东盟博览会 – 20–24.10.2009, in Nanning, in the Province of Guangxi – 广西省南宁市 – China] started officially on Tuesday, 20 October 2009, under the presidency of Chinese Deputy Prime Minister, Mr. Li Keqiang [李克强 – Pinyin: Lǐ Kèqíang], the Laotian Prime Minister representing the ASEAN countries, and the Secretary General of ASEAN [Dr. Surin Pitsuwan]. On the inauguration day of the trade exhibition, Cambodia signed two investment projects worth US$60 million.

“The first investment project is for mineral exploration, with investments amounting to US$50 million, and the second project is for tourism, worth US$10 million. This is according to Undersecretary of State of the Ministry of Tourism, Mr. Pak Sokhom, who informed journalists during the exhibition in Nanning, China.

“The 6th China-ASEAN trade exhibition is held for 5 days and started on Tuesday morning [20.10.2009] with the presence of the representative of the host country, the Chinese Deputy Prime Minister, Mr. Li Keqiang, the Laotian Prime Minister – the head of the event organizer for ASEAN, the ASEAN Secretary General, and representatives from all ASEAN countries.

“At the exhibition stalls of Cambodia, there were – beside many agricultural products displayed such as rice, corn, soy beans, and fruit – also jewelries, made from precious gems, displayed at many stalls, furniture, handicrafts, and information about investment projects of many companies in Cambodia.

“The Undersecretary of State of the Ministry of Tourism, Mr. Pak Sokhom, said that this year, Cambodia has 80 stalls at the exhibition, with 46 private companies from Cambodia participating, and a delegation of 246 officials from the Ministry of Commerce, the Ministry of Tourism, the Ministry of Industry, the Ministry of Culture, and the Ministry of Agriculture. He added that Cambodia chose a topic for the China-ASEAN Expo this year: The Sihanoukville Port Is a Charming Port. It is written so as to focus on encouraging investment in the Special Economic Zone development project in Sihanoukville. The plan and posters of the Special Economic Zone development project in Sihanoukville are displayed at the entry of the exhibition hall for Cambodia, attracting many visitors.

“On Wednesday evening [21.10.2009], a conference about the Special Economic Zone development project in Sihanoukville will be held for foreign investors, including those not from from China or from ASEAN countries. There are other foreign investors from America, Australia, France, Japan, and Korea.” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5026, 21.10.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2077, 21.10.2009

  • Nuth Sa An: The New Demonstration Law Will Punish Members of the Authorities that Side with Demonstrators
  • The Prime Minister Will Leave to Attend the ASEAN Summit on 23 October 2009 [in Thailand]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #513, 21.10.2009

  • [The president of the Sam Rainsy Party] Mr. Sam Rainsy Shows His Position to Cooperate with the Government to Prevent Demonstrations in Cambodia [as demonstration are the last choice for people, he suggested to the ruling party to cooperate with the SRP to seek solutions before demonstrations are held – if solutions are found, people do not need to demonstrate]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6784, 21.10.2009

  • In the Last 20 Years Cambodia Has Encountered 12 Floods, Killing 1,125 People and Wasting More Than US$300 Million, and Drought Five Times, Wasting US$140 Million [according to the Minister of Environment, Mr. Mok Mareth]
  • The Authorities Confiscated Two Boats Loaded with Luxury Wood [in Kratie and Stung Treng]

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer edition], Vol.1, #30, 21.10.2009

  • [The Minister of Economy and Finance] Mr. Keat Chhon: The Declining Cambodian Economy Will Grow Again by 2.1% this Year [to 5% based on agricultural output]
  • The World Health Organization Will Provide A/H1N1 Flu Vaccines to Cambodia [WHO plans to distribute 60 million doses of A/H1N1 vaccines to developing countries in November 2009]
  • The Authorities Build 3,000 Meters of Steps to the Preah Vihear Temple [to be built alongside the ancient stone steps]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5026, 21.10.2009

  • The Royal Government Expects that the South Korean President Will Bring Complete Support for Cambodia [during his visit on 22 October 2009]
  • Siamese [Thai] Soldiers Shot Dead Another Khmer Citizen Who Cut Trees at the [Khmer-Thai] Border
  • Cambodia Signed Two Investment Projects [mineral exploring and tourism investments] Worth US$60 Million during the Inauguration of the 6th China-ASEAN Expo – CAEXPO [第六届中国—东盟博览会 – 20–24.10.2009, in Nanning, in the Province of Guangxi – 广西省南宁市 – China]
  • China Called for Closer Cooperation between China and ASEAN [source]
  • The Cambodian [in Battambang, Mr. Van Thy] Can Design Drying Machines for Agricultural Product on His Own [after he having studied agriculture in Vietnam]
  • Thai Former Prime Minister Chavalit, Who Joined the [Puea Thai] Party Supporting [the Thai ousted prime minister] Thaksin Shinawatra Will Visit Cambodia and Meet with Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen [privately] before the ASEAN Summit [later, REUTERS reported “Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen has offered to host his ‘eternal friend,’ fugitive former Thai premier Thaksin Shinawatra, at any time, state television reported on Wednesday]

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The Korean Ambassador to Cambodia Stressed the Place of Bilateral Ties with Cambodia Ahead of a Visit by the Korean President Next Week – Thursday, 15.10.2009

Posted on 16 October 2009. Filed under: Week 634 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 634 – Thursday, 15.10.2009

“Just a week before a visit by the South Korean President to Cambodia, the ambassador noticed that the pace of investment, of commerce, and of other ties between Cambodia and Korea has flourished significantly, making South Korea the country with the most investors in Cambodia and with the highest number of international tourists’ arrivals since the establishment of ties between both countries in 1997.

“The President of the Republic of Korea will lead a government and businesspeople’s delegation to make an official visit to the Kingdom of Cambodia for two days from 22 to 23 October 2009.

“During a roundtable meeting organized by the Club of Cambodian Journalists with support from the Konrad Adenauer Foundation of Germany on 14 October 2009 at the Hotel Cambodiana, the Korean Ambassador to Cambodia, Mr. Lee Kyung-Soo, said that the two-day visit by the Korean President in Cambodia is made in response to an invitation by Samdech Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen, who officially visited the Republic of Korea (South Korea) in June 2009.

“The Korean Ambassador to Cambodia, Mr. Lee Kyung-Soo, recounted the achievements of the Cambodian-Korean ties ahead of a visit by the head of the Korean government to Cambodia during the forum about cooperation between Cambodia and the Republic of Korea. He said that besides meeting with the King and top leaders of Cambodia, the South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak will attend talks with Cambodian and Korean investors in Phnom Penh.

“The Ambassador said that Korean investments in Cambodia increased up to US$2.7 Billion by 2007. In 2008, investments amounted US$1,238 million. He said these are figures from the Council for the Development of Cambodia. In the first six months of 2009, Korean investments amounted to only US$100 million, declining by 58% compared to the corresponding period in 2008. He went on to say that this was due to the global economic crisis, but not due to any other reasons.

“Ambassador Lee Kyung-Soo added that after establishing diplomatic ties in 1997, Korean investors invested in the garment sector, in tourism, and in mineral resources development. From 2007 onward, Korean investors invested also in construction, real estate, agriculture, industry, and finance and banking.

“As for commerce, Korean is in the 7th position of countries importing products to Cambodia, worth US$309 million, while Cambodia is in the 80th position of countries importing to South Korea, exporting products worth US$294 million.

“Also, South Korea is one of the important donors of Cambodia. Since 2001, there have been US$220 million in loans and US$46 million in grant aid.

“The Ambassador said during the forum with Cambodian journalists that at present, there are 8,400 Khmer people living (legally) in Korea, including Khmer workers, Khmer women married to Korean men, and Khmer students. Among these 8,400 Khmer people, 2,900 are Khmer women married to Korean men, and 4,900 workers. There are about 4,000 Korean people living in the Kingdom of Cambodia.

“According to an announcement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Cambodia on 14 October 2009, during the official visit to Cambodia, Mr. Lee Myung-Bak will meet the King of Cambodia, Preah Karuna Preah Bat Samdech Preah Boromaneath Norodom Sihamony. Then he will meet in courtesey visits with the President of the Senate, Samdech Akkak Thoma Pothisal Chea Sim and the President of the National Assembly, Samdech Akkak Ponhea Chakrei Heng Samrin. He will have top bilateral meetings with the Cambodian Prime Minister, Samdech Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen.

“The announcement says that Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen and Mr. Lee Myung-Bak will witness a signing ceremony for two agreements between the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Cambodia, Mr. Hor Namhong, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Commerce of the Republic of Korea, Mr. Yu Myung-Wan – an extradition agreement, and an agreement on financial credits for economic development cooperation from 2009 to 2012.

“During the first official visit by the South Korean President, Mr. Lee Myung-Bak to Cambodia, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that five more documents are expected to be signed also. 1. Agreement about cooperation between the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Republic of Korea and the Chamber of Commerce of Cambodia; 2. Agreement on cooperation to produce publications; 3. Memorandum of Understanding about cooperation in the mine sector; 4. Memorandum of Understanding about joint cooperation in exploring mineral resources; and 5. Memorandum of Understanding about cooperation in investments to plant trees and on problems of climate change.” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5021, 15.10.2009

.

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Thursday, 15 October 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #311, 15.10.2009

  • Today the Cambodian Prime Minister Will Travel to China to Attend a [commercial and economic] Exhibition [some loan agreements are expected to be signed during his visiting]
  • South Korea Will Invest to Establish a Car Manufacturing Factory in Cambodia [the Hyundai company plans to establish a factory in Koh Kong]
  • Citizens Countrywide Spend US$69.5 Million per Year on Cigarettes [according to the Cambodia Movement for Health]
  • Thirteen More People Were Confirmed with Swine Flu [adding the number up to 146 in total in Cambodia]
  • Obama Agreed to Send 12,000 More Soldiers to Afghanistan [other sources of information say that no decision has been taken]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2072, 15.10.2009

  • The Director of the [new, planned] Southeast Asian Radio and Television Station Was Arrested for Allegedly Taking US$7 Million [Phnom Penh – The Cambodia Daily of 15.10.2009 reports that the station will start to broadcast in January 2010]
  • The United Arab Emirates Plan to Invest in Rice Cultivation in Cambodia [according to a meeting between the Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology of Cambodia, Mr. Lim Kean Hor, and the Minister of Economy of the United Arab Emirates, Sultan Bin Saeed Al Mansoori]
  • Road Tax Checking for 2009 Will Begin on 16 October 2009 Countrywide

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #509, 15.10.2009

  • For the Second Time the Appeals Court Rejected to Accept Mu Sochua’s Complaint [against Prime Minister Hun Sen for defamation] and It Will Not Summon [Prime Minister] Hun Sen for Questioning [while Ms. Mu Sochua had been fined Riel 16.5 million (approx. US$4,125), as a fine and as compensation, for losing in Prime Minister Hun Sen’s defamation case]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6779, 15.10.2009

  • Cambodia Is Waiting for an Official Response [which denies, according to press reports, that the Thai Foreign Minister would seek ASEAN’s approval for a “neutral organization” that “may provide an avenue for Thailand and Cambodia to settle the dispute”], but Cambodia Will Not Respond though the Media [according to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Cambodia, Mr. Hor Namhong, Cambodia will raise the Khmer-Thai border disputes during the ASEAN summit]

Note:

In the meantime The Cambodia Daily reported from the official Thai response, which quotes an agreement achieved during the visit of Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva with Prime Minister Hun Sen: “Both sides agreed that the issue of the Temple of Phra Viharn be addressed through existing bilateral mechanisms between our two countries.”

It might also be remembered that there are multiple claims since many years on the Spratley Islands in the South China Sea, by the ASEAN members Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Vietnam (in addition to claims by China, and separately also by Taiwan), but the ASEAN member states have agreed that this conflict between member states of ASEAN should not be handled by ASEAN, as it might split the positions of the other ASEAN countries – and the countries concerned should work on their bilateral problems bilaterally.

Phnom Penh Post, Vol.1, #26, 15.10.2009

  • The National Assembly Adopted a Demonstration Law [less than 200 people can assemble at a public place with permission from the authorities, to be applied for at least 12 hours before]
  • [South] Korea Plans to Invest in a Hydro-Electric Dam at the Sesan River [US$700 million to generate 325 megawatt of electricity – Ratanakiri]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5021, 15.10.2009

  • The Korean Ambassador to Cambodia Stressed the Place of Bilateral Ties with Cambodia Ahead of a Visit by the Korean President Next Week
  • More Than US$200 Million Is Needed to Reconstruct the 1,200 Irrigation Systems Countrywide [according to the Minister of Water Resources and Meteorology]

Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.17, #1808, 15.10.2009

  • The Government Maintains a Position to Solve the Border Disputes with Siam [Thailand] in the ASEAN Framework

.

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