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Cambodia: ADHOC reveal severe restrictions on fundamental freedoms; govt. deny the accusations

"Rights NGO says fundamental freedoms deterioration persists", 5 January 2021

Local human rights group ADHOC said fundamental freedoms were severely restricted in Phnom Penh, especially the ongoing curbs on freedom of expression and association, according to a new report.

The NGO released the report where it monitored fundamental freedoms for 2020 and found 178 cases of rights violations across the country. The government was restricting the rights of citizens and preventing them from expressing their right to expression, peaceful assembly and political participation…

“[There] still remains disruption by the law enforcement forces or the authorities in cases where citizens are being obstructed in participating in the activities of organizations, associations, communities and unions” the report reads.

Chin Malin, vice president of Cambodia Human Rights Committee, has dismissed ADOHC’s report because “small organizations” release reports to topple the government.

“When the police implement the law against their people they are always criticized about violating freedom of expression,” he said.

He said rights groups have no evidence to support their accusations but that law enforcement has strong evidence to support their charges.

Soeng Senkaruna, a senior investigator at rights group ADHOC, said the government by default denied accusations of deterioration in Cambodia’s human rights record and democratic standing.

“What we have found is based on facts that have happened, so the government should consider to reverse them to improve the situation,” he said…

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