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28 Jul 2021

Kingdom of Cambodia

Cambodia: Govt. response rejects concerns of UN Special Rapporteurs about pre-trial detention of human rights defenders

"Clarifications from the Ministry of Justice of the Kingdom of Cambodia to the joint communication of the Special Procedures No. AL KHM 7/2021 dated 10 June 2021", 28 July 2021.


The concern of the Special Procedures over the judicial proceedings against the seven accused does not reflect the reality on the grounds. The... Court has already held two public hearings on the case of the seven accused... Moreover, the... Court always sets its hearing date continuously. Unfortunately, due to the outbreak of Covid-19... the hearings had been postponed several times... [T]o protect the lives of all detainees in the prison from the Covid-19 pandemic, not only lawyers but also their family members were not permitted to meet the detainees... It was applied to all without any discrimination.

The concern over the alleged threatening and punishment against the so-called human rights defenders in Cambodia in an attempt to incite fear amongst those working for the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms by Cambodian authority, and the suppression of the right to freedom of expression, freedom of association, and freedom of peaceful assembly does not reflect the reality in Cambodia either. The legal enforcement by Cambodian authorities is in full adherence to the existing procedures and rules with the aim of maintaining and guaranteeing social security and public order. In fact, full exercise of their rights and freedoms by all Cambodian citizens are guaranteed in the constitution...