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3 Set 2020

Khuon Narim, CamboJA

Cambodia: Supporters of detained union leader continue to seek intervention from key embassies for his release

"Rong Chhun’s supporters petition more embassies to intervene in arrests", 02 September 2020

Supporters and activists are continuing to protest for the release of prominent union leader Rong Chhun, calling on international communities, notably countries that are signatories to the Paris Peace Agreements, to pressure the government into securing the release of Chhun and other activists who were jailed ...

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court … charged outspoken union leader Rong Chhun for incitement to disturb social security over comments ... A dozen more activists who participated in protests demanding Chhun’s release were also arrested, with six of them facing the same incitement charge, including Khmer Win Party leader Soung Sophorn...

U.S. Embassy spokesman Chad Roedemeier, said … that the United States was monitoring the situation carefully.

“The United States is closely following the continued detention of respected union leader Rong Chhun,” he said via email. “Cambodia’s Constitution guarantees all citizens the right to freedom of expression, and we have consistently raised concerns with the Cambodian government about taking meaningful steps to reopen the political and civic space.”

…, the United Nations OHCHR also confirmed by email that it had received a petition delivered by the protesters ....

“International human rights law guarantees the right to security and liberty of person and protects individuals from arbitrary arrest and detention,” said OHCHR Cambodia Representative Pradeep Wagle. “The Office reminds the concerned authorities of their obligations to ensure that persons detained have access to a trial within a reasonable time. Furthermore, it shall not be the general rule that persons awaiting trial shall be detained in custody.”…

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