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1 Jan 2022

Mech Dara, VOD

Cambodia: Police arrest at least 9 women union members leading NagaWorld strike demanding reinstatement of dismissed unionists; authorities claim the strike is illegal

"Riot Police, Further Arrest in New Year’s Eve NagaWorld Strike Crackdown", 01 January 2022

Around 9 p.m. on New Year’s Eve, striking casino workers began holding each other’s hands as they faced down a team of an estimated 100 uniformed police officers.

Already, eight workers, including senior union leaders, had been arrested that evening from their union offices...

Around 9:30 p.m., police arrested a ninth worker, Touch Sereymeas, from in front of NagaWorld 2. Sereymeas had previously been misidentified as a Japanese agent in an anonymous Facebook page widely shared through government-aligned media channels...

... “We will still continue to demand justice in front of NagaWorld,” said a protester, Chhoun Sam An, despite the night’s turmoil. “We come here to protest because of the suffering, and we come from our heart.”

At midnight the workers dispersed. They said they had been successful in preventing the arrest of a 10th worker by banding together...

Around 300 workers are still contesting their terminations and pushing for reinstatement, and at one point last week the daily protests outside the casinos swelled to around 1,000 participants. Negotiations have largely stalled.

... Chhim Sithar, the Naga union’s president who has spoken of her likely arrest, said by phone that she was in the dark about what was happening to her arrested colleagues.

“So far we haven’t gotten through them and we don’t know where they’ve taken them,” Sithar said...

In a statement to shareholders last month, NagaCorp said casino operations would continue. “[T]he Board believes that the illegal strike has had no material negative impact on the overall business and operations of the Group.”