Thursday, 11.9.2008: Response to the Opinion Piece Published in The Nation, which Undermines Friendship by Saying ‘When Cambodia Cries Wolf’

Posted on 12 September 2008. Filed under: Week 577 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 577

“Mr. Julio A. Jeldres, Samdech Euv’s [the King-Father’s] biographer, wrote a letter-to-the-editor of an English language newspaper in Thailand, The Nation, on 5 August 2008, in response to an opinion piece of a Thai citizen [published on 1 August 2008, who used the name Bangkokian] under the title ‘When Cambodia Cries Wolf.’

Koh Santepheap would like to unofficially translate this respons, written in English, translating it into Khmer and publish it.

Note:

The response, Ambassador Jeldres’s letter-to-the-editor, was re-published in the Daily Documents section of website of Their Majetis Norodom Sihanouk and Norodom Monineath Sihanouk, the King-Father and the Queen Mother of Cambodia – by the Royal Cabinet of His Majesty King Norodom Sihanouk, Royal Palace, Phnom Penh, on 9 September 2008.

For the English Mirror, we link therefore the the royal website – by a mouse click here, the original text becomes available.

Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6447, 11.9.2008

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Thursday, 11 September 2008


Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1743, 11.9.2008

  • Cheam Yeap [a Cambodian People’s Party parliametarian]: Opposing Actions of Sam Rainsy Look Like a Competition [for high reputation] in the National Assembly [Ms. Mu Sochua, the Sam Rainsy Party deputy secretary general, said that the Sam Rainsy Party will send a letter to request a pardon from the King for the absences in the first session of the National Assembly planned for 24 September 2008]
  • [Deputy Prime Minister] Sok An: Cambodia Will Not Leap Backwards in Fighting Terrorism [stated during the opening of a workshop about the implementation of anti-terrorist legislation on 8 and 9 September 2008]
  • Victims of Tree Flling when a Tree Fell on Their House Ask Apsara Authority to Pay Compensation [10 September 2008 – Siem Reap]


Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #241, 11.9.2008

  • Sam Rainsy Clearly Affirms Absolute Position Not to Attend the First Session of the National Assembly on 24 September 2008 [because of irregularities during the elections]


Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6447, 11.9.2008

  • Response to the Opinion Piece Published in The Nation, which Undermines Friendship by Saying ‘When Cambodia Cries Wolf’


Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3562, 11.9.2008

  • Mr. Yim Sovann [Sam Rainsy Party parliamentarian] Criticizes Much Expenses of the National Assembly Budget


Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4691, 11.9.2008

  • European Observers: The Claim that 1.7 Million Vietnamese Had Voted Is a Pumped-Up Number [this reaction was voiced from Brussels, Belgium, on 9 September 2008, against a report that 1.7 million Vietnamese went to vote during the fourth term parliamentarian elections]
  • Siamese [Thai] Troops Are Increased in Chub Angkunh, and They Prevent Cambodian Troops to Patrol [Oddar Meanchey]
  • Siam [Thailand] Troops Try to Enter the Ta Krabei Temple, but Are Prevented by Cambodian Troops [Oddar Meanchey]


Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3406, 11.9.2008

  • Investigating Agency of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation Will Arrive in Cambodia on 11 September to Investigate the Murder of the Journalist Mr. Khim Sambo and his [21-year-old] son [who were shot dead in the evening of 11 July 2008 near the Olympic Stadium in Phnom Penh]

Click here to have a look at the last editorial: Numbers – how to evaluate them: which realities do they really represent?

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Friday, 5.9.2008: Freedom of Press Increases, but Freedom of Expression in Public Declines

Posted on 6 September 2008. Filed under: Week 576 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 576

“Phnom Penh: The Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association – ADHOC – assessed that over the course of time, the freedom of the press has increased, but the freedom of expression in the public has declined.

“Mr. Thun Saray, the president of ADHOC, reported on 4 September 2008 to journalists in a meeting to sum up the results of the 2005 to 2009 strategic plans, that Cambodia goes through a high rate of economic growth and noticeable poverty reduction. As for the freedom of the press, ADHOC is not the evaluator, but different press organizations assessed that the situation is better than from 2005 to 2006. While the economy and the freedom of the press flourished, the freedom of expression in public went down.

“Mr. Thun Saray added that previously, the freedom of expression included the right to hold demonstrations in public, and so the poor were allowed to protest by marching in public places or in front of different embassies. But at present, their rights are almost completely eroded, while land disputes still exist without proper solutions; high ranking officials, the powerful, and the rich, still violate land rights of communities and of citizens.

“According to reports of ADHOC, observing the human rights situation in Cambodia, Cambodia gained a high rate of economic growth and achieved noticeable poverty alleviation during more than 15 years. However, the distribution of the benefits of the economic growth is not equal, which results in increasing inequality on the receiving side of the gains. One important reason for this inequality is that natural resources are not equally distributed, especially land. Based on reports of the United Nations Development Program – UNDP – in 2007, the rich, in total about 20% of the population, own between 59% to 70% of the land, while the land ownership of the poor, approximately 40% of the total populations, declined from 8.4% to 5,4% during 1999 to 2003 and 2004 (in a period of 4 to 5 years only). Inequality in owning important cultivation property, like land, leads to a major crisis, because it relates to the everyday living of almost 80% of the total populations who live in rural areas, and this will lead to continue to increase the inequality of production, of income seeking, and of land use in the future. Land grabbing and poor administration of natural resources (specifically, in the field of forestry and fisheries) are major factors for the increase of a status of having no land, of inequality of land ownership, and in the distribution of benefits from those resources.

“Land grabbing is mostly committed by the powerful and the rich, by using different tricks, and by private companies that had received economic land concessions from the government, but they do not properly implement what they contracted.” Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1738, 5.9.2008

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Friday, 5 September 2008


Chakraval, Vol.16, #2808, 5.9.2008

  • Norodom Ranariddh Party Spokesperson [Suth Dina] Rejects Information about Intention to Join the Government


Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1738, 5.9.2008

  • Freedom of Press Increases, but Freedom of Expression in Public Declines
  • Best-Selling Cambodian Dry Season Paddy Rice Is Transported to Siam [Thailand] Through Special Crossing Points [despite serious Cambodian-Thai border disputes]
  • [Thai Prime Minister] Samak Vows to Stay in Power Although [Thai Minister of Foreign Affairs] Taj Bunnag Resigned [he is also an advisor to the Thai King]


Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #91, 5.9.2008

  • Municipality Rejects Demand for Market Prices; Boeng Kak Lake People Struggle [demanding solution for compensation at market prices]
  • Fisheries Official Expects that the Volume of Fish Raising Fish Will Increase This Year [in a workshop on 3 September 2008, Nao Thuok, the director of Fisheries Department of the Ministry of Agriculture, said that people in Cambodia and worldwide have high need of fish]
  • US to Provide $1 Billion [economic] Aid to Georgia


Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6441, 4.9.2008

  • Khmer Vendors Enter to Sell Things as Normal in Rong Kloeu Market [in Thailand, near the Poipet border crossing]
  • Related to the Trial of the [former] Chief of the Tuol Sleng Prison, There Are More Than 1,800 Complaints, Among Them 28 Are Civil Complaints [according to Khmer Rouge Tribunal officials]


Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3557, 5.9.2008

  • Yuon [Vietnamese] Authorities Issued a Letter to Release Tim Sakhan [who had been defrocked on accusation of having perpetrated an offense against the Buddhist law, because he was accused to have destroyed the harmony between Vietnam and Cambodia] from Prison but It Does Not Allow Him to Travel to Cambodia
  • Mr. Sam Rainsy Writes to the King, Asking for Permission to Take the Oath [installing memberss of parliament] Separately [not on 24 September but on 25 September – because the Sam Rainsy Party is not satisfied with the results of the fourth term parliamentary election]


Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4686, 5.9.2008

  • Japanese Government Grants ¥369 Million [approx. US$3,415,000] to the Royal Government of Cambodia [to increase food production and to improve the National Television Programs]
  • Intel Plans to Invest in Information Technology in Cambodian Education

Click here to have a look at the last editorial – will the Prime Minister’s concern for the environment continue to be violated?

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Thursday, 4.9.2008: Census Results Show that the Population of Cambodia Is 13,388,910

Posted on 5 September 2008. Filed under: Week 576 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 576

“Phnom Penh: On 3 September 2008, the Ministry of Planning announced, under the presidency by Mr. Sar Kheng, a Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, the results of the general census of Cambodian citizens in 2008.

“According to the temporary results of a countrywide census published on 3 March 2008, the number of Cambodian citizens is 13,388,910 persons, out of which 6,495,512 are male and 6,893,398 are female. Based on these results, the numbers of citizens increases slower than before, because the birth rate declined, which is in line with the predictions and the expectations.

“Mr. Chhay Than, Senior Minister and Minister of Planning, said that after the 1962 census which concluded that the number of citizens of Cambodia was 5.7 million, there was no other census conducted during a period of more than three decades because of a continuing internal crisis. The fist census was conducted in 1998, and the second in 2008 – exactly ten years ago.

“Mr. Chhay Than continued that the census in 2008 coverd 2.8 million families living in different regions of the twenty four provinces and cities countrywide. Almost all families were interviewed and counted during a time period of eleven days. Families living at home, but also at institutions such as hotels, guesthouses, pagodas, hospitals, and prisons were interviewed and counted also.

“Senior Minister Chhay Than added that special arrangements were made to count the number of citizens who are homeless, citizens who move from place to place, and citizens living on boats.

“There were 28,000 interviewing officials and 7,000 supervising officials to meet all families to count and to interview the members of families, and to complete questionnaire tables. There were 72 provincial and city census officials, 500 instructors, 370 district census officials, 1,621 commune census officials, 500 translators, and more interviewing and supervising officials for special regions, such as camps and military bases.

“Mr. Chhay Than went on to say that according to the temporary results of the general census in 2008, compiling all figures [from the previous eleven days of interviews] by 0:00 a.m. on 3 March 2008, the population of Cambodia was 13,388,910, among which there are 6,495,512 males and 6,893,398 females. Compared to the population in the Southeast Asian region, the number of Cambodian citizens is 2.3% of the numbers of citizens in the [completely undefined] region.

“Mr. Sar Kheng, a Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, said that a census is a task that aims at getting all statistical data needed for the creation of policies, activity programs, administrative management, as well as various decisions that follow the reality of the country.

“Mr. Sar Kheng added that so far, the tasks of the census, its operation at the basis, and the data collection went smoothly according to plans. The Deputy Prime Minister said that a census is the only source of information about the number, and the characteristics of the citizens.

“Deputy Prime Minister Sar Kheng said also that the census provides also the basis for selective patterns of society, as well as the starting point using population numbers for predictions of future population developments, and it is an important factor when planning for various sectors.

“Mr. Sar Kheng thanked the United Nations Population Fund [UNFPA], the Japan International Cooperation Agency [JICA], and the government of Germany that had provided technical assistance and funds to support the census in 2008, which is important in the history of Cambodia to develop the country.” Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1737, 4.9.2008

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Thursday, 4 September 2008


Deum Tnot, Vol.1, #84, 3-9.8.2008

  • Authorities and Company Representatives Claim that Boeng Kak Lake Development Plan Is Progressing Smoothly Despite Some Protests


Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1737, 4.8.2008

  • Census Results Show that the Population of Cambodia Is 13,388,910
  • Thai Demonstrators Disregard [Thai Prime Minister] Samak’s Declaration of a State of Emergency


Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #236, 4.8.2008

  • [Cambodian Independent Teachers’ Association President] Rong Chhun Demands Phnom Penh Government Reduce Fuel Prices on Market


Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #90, 4.8.2008

  • Khmer Rouge Tribunal Received Complaints about Gender Violence [rape and killings of cross-gender persons living as the gender other than that assigned at birth, during Khmer Rouge regime]


Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6441, 4.8.2008

  • Norodom Ranariddh Party Supports Election Results, but Sam Rainsy Party and Human Rights Party Still Continue to Protest


Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3556, 4.8.2008

  • Everything Is Ready for the First National Assembly Session to Hold a Package Voting [says Leng Peng Long, Secretary-General of the National Assembly Secretariat]
  • Sam Rainsy: Khmer Rouge Killed People, but the Cambodian People’s Party Kills Citizens’ Rights [on 3 September, Sam Rainsy Party and Human Rights Party held a joint press conference showing documents as evidence of irregularities in the fourth term parliamentary election]


Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4685, 4.8.2008

  • Parliamentarians of the Sam Rainsy Party and of the Human Rights Party Will Not Swear an Oath together with the Parliamentarians of the Cambodian People’s Party [because they do not believe that the Cambodian People’s Party won 90 seats]


Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3401, 4.8.2008

  • Whoever Does Not Swear an Oath [as member of the National Assembly] Will Not Have Parliamentary Immunity [Cambodian People’s Party senior official Nguon Nhel warns parliamentarians who plan not to participate in swearing the oath in the first session of the National Assembly]

Click here to have a look at the last editorial – will the Prime Minister’s concern for the environment continue to be violated?

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Saturday, 9.8.2008: Officials and Staff of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal Have Not Received Their Salaries because of a Corruption Scandal

Posted on 10 August 2008. Filed under: week 572 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 572

“Recently, the UN Development Program office [UNDP] decided to delay the transfer of funds for the salaries of more than US$300,000 for Khmer officials and staff of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, after there were complaints about corruption at the Cambodian side. The delayed salaries for around 250 Cambodian officials and staff are for July.

“Ms. Amy Brown [phonetic], UNDP public relations officer, explained by e-mail that the decision to delay the transfer of salary funds for the Khmer staff was made after new claims about corruption had been made. At present, UNDP and donor countries are reviewing everything related to the case. She explained that the UNDP had decided to delay the transfer of the salaries in order to assure the integrity of the funds.

“The UN spokesperson of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, Mr. Peter Foster, said that some Cambodian officials and staff had lodged complaints to the UN relating to corruption and to some other irregularities. A UN oversight office in New York checking internal problems is investigating these cases.

“Regarding the aforementioned problems, Ms. Helen Jarvis, a public affairs official of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, did not explain the reasons for the delay of the Khmer staff salaries, she just considered it to be related to a late availability of the funds for the salaries. She said, ‘As it is known already, there are US$300,000 for the salaries for July, but we do not yet have the possibility to provide the July salaries. However, all together we are still waiting for much bigger funds than the funds to provide the salaries.’

“Both Ms. Helen Jarvis and Mr. Peter Foster explained that negotiations are proceeding to solve these problems, and solutions will be found soon. It is not the first time that the Khmer staff of the Cambodian side of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal receive late salaries, but it is the first time that the UNDP delays the Khmer staff’s salaries in order to investigate corruption.

“In early 2007, an organization concerned with law reform activities, which has its seat in New York in the USA – the Open Society Justice Initiative – revealed that it had received information about Cambodian staff paying part their salaries as a kick-back to officials of the Khmer government in return for having been employed at the Khmer Rouge Tribunal. What the Open Society Justice Initiative had raised made Sean Visoth, the head of the administration of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, very angry, and he announced to stop cooperating with this US organization.

“It should be noted that the UNDP administers the funds to provide the salaries of Khmer staff from the Cambodian section of the site.

“This new scandal makes the public aware that the international community starts to have less and less trust in the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, because the scandal of 2007 is not yet solved, and now there is another shameful scandal. It is therefore not so easy for the Khmer Rouge Tribunal to seek additional millions of dollars to operate until the end. So far, in addition to Japan, France, Australia, and Germany, no other countries provide additional funds for this mixed tribunal [with a Cambodian and a United Nations component].

“Recently, officials of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal reported that the trial of Kang Kek Ieu, called Duch, the former chief of the Tuol Sleng Prison, will be conducted in September or October, but what causes serious concern is that the Khmer Rouge Tribunal is facing a serious financial crisis – and it is facing a shameful corruption scandal. So this crisis might delay the trial of former senior Khmer Rouge leaders, where all the suspects, who are being detained in the special Khmer Rouge Tribunal detention center, are old and have serious and alarming illnesses.

“Nevertheless, Khmer citizens in Cambodia and abroad want the trial of Duch, as well as of other former senior Khmer Rouge leaders, to happen as soon as possible as long as they are still alive and are able to reveal facts while standing trial. But if the trial is still delayed, the suspects detained for trial might die one by one, and the secrets of the Killing Field regime will be buried with their deaths. Therefore, the sooner the trail of the former senior Khmer Rouge leaders is held, the better, because the health of Khiev Samphan and of Ieng Sary is getting worse.

“Observers of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal since it was started said that, if this mixed tribunal has the intention to find justice for more than 1.7 million Khmer citizens who were killed during the Killing Field regime, the trial of Duch has to happen in September or October as planned. If not, it means that the Khmer Rouge Tribunal has no intention to find justice for the victims, and Khmer citizens will never see the light of real justice. Therefore the international community and donor countries must press on with the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, to try the suspects soon as a warning for the next Khmer leaders not to repeat a cruel massacre like the former Khmer Rouge leaders committed.” Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3534, 9-10.8.2008

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Saturday, 9 August 2008


Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1715, 9.8.2008

  • The Situation at the Ta Moan Temple Seems to Be Unchanged; Khmer and Siamese [Thai] Troops Patrol the Temple Together
  • A Mother Led [her three] Children to Plant Corn in a Field and Stepped on a Mine and Triggered an Explosion which Killed Her [7-year-old] Son and Seriously Injured Three Persons [including the mother, and her five-year-old and nine-month-old daughters]


Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #212, 9.8.2008

Khmer Sthapana, Vol.1, #69, 9.8.2008

  • The Cambodian Center for Human Rights Welcomed the Commitment of the Government [expressed trough a speech by Prime Minister Hun Sen to arrest the murderers and those who are responsible for the murder of Mr. Khim Sambo and of his 21-year-old son]
  • Three Opposition Parties [the Sam Rainsy Party, the Human Rights Party, and the Norodom Ranariddh Party] Plan to Boycott the Swearing-In Ceremony [planned for the inaugural session of he new parliament on 24 September 2008]


Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6419, 9-10.8.2008

  • Samdech Dekchor [Prime Minister Hun Sen] Requests to Construct a Road to the Preah Vihear Temple and a Road from Anlong Veng to Srah Eaem
  • A Book about “Understanding Trauma in Cambodia” Is Published on a Website [of the Center for Social Development, on the role of psychology for Cambodian people]
  • [Thousands of] Exiled Tibetans Hold Demonstrations in Nepal and India [7 August 2008]


Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3534, 9-10.8.2008

  • Officials and Staff of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal Have Not Received Their Salaries because of a Corruption Scandal
  • Yuon [Vietnamese] Authorities Are Restricting the Rights of Kampuchea Krom Khmer Citizens in [former] Svay Tong District, Moat Chruk Province [so called in Khmer in French colonial time, now part of Vietnam, called An Gian Province] More Strongly [by not allowing them to set up satellite television antennas at their houses – click here for information from Vietnam with reference to the Khmer population]


Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4663, 9.8.2008

  • Appeals Court Decided to Allow Ms. Chea Ratha’s Assistant [Mr. Ea Vuthea, involved in an acid attack on Ms. In Soklida’s aunt on 8 May 2008] to Be Temporarily Released from Detention; Ms. In Soklida Continues to Hide Herself at a Safe Place because of Fear [of revenge]
  • Price of Electricity in Pursat Increased to US$0.50 per Kilowatt [from the previous price of US$0.40]; It Increased Two Days after the Election Day
  • [Former Thai prime minister] Thaksin: I Will Not Escape from the Country [regarding his court cases, that he might be sentenced to jail]


Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3380, 9.8.2008

  • USAID Sponsored to Produce a Serial Drama [describing the Cambodian legal system] Which Will Be Showed on Televisions Starting Late This Week
  • Civil Society Organizations Call on Generous People to Help the Families of Soldiers Who Are Protecting the Borders [at the Preah Vihear regions]

Click here to have a look at the last editorial – where we try to provide our readers with important information which all publications in Cambodia – as far as we can see – are not providing; but the international community knows more – we wonder how long the Cambodian public can be held uninformed.

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