News

(03-August-2015 / Cambodia Daily)

The Ministry of Land Management has again accused rights group Licadho of spreading false data that shows that the number of families embroiled in new or intensifying land disputes jumped threefold last year.

In February, Licadho said that 10,625 families involved in land disputes approached the NGO for the first time in 2014 in the 13 central and western provinces it monitors. Licadho said the disputes involved some 50,000 people, and three times as many families as it recorded in 2013.

The ministry disputed the figures within days, insisting that there were only about 1,260 unresolved land dispute “cases” across the country. However, it failed to make the distinction between families and cases, each of which can involve hundreds of families.

(03-August-2015 / Phnom Penh Post)

A hundred members of the Lor Peang community performed a cursing rite yesterday over a 10-year running land dispute with the KDC International Company.

The traditional ceremony, meant to punish wrongdoers, was organised in response to a lack of government intervention between 90 families seeking compensation for 183 hectares of land acquired by KDC, despite many filed complaints.

The Chinese company is co-owned by the wife of Cambodia’s Minister of Mines and Energy Suy Sem.

(03-August-2015 / Phnom Penh Post)

Twelve Montagnards were voluntarily repatriated to Vietnam on Friday through a Ratanakkiri province border checkpoint after being cheated by a broker who promised them jobs in Thailand, according to officials.

The Montagnards – a minority group from Vietnam’s highlands – sold their land, property and cattle about eight months ago after “a broker told them that working in Thailand would get them a bigger salary”, said Ratanakkiri deputy police chief Chea Bunthoeun.

But the jobs never materialised so the group, which included two children, decided last week to return home.

(02-August-2015 / KHT)

CHUUK DISTRICT, Kampot (Khmer Times) – Reinforcing a view that land grabbing is now a business for some rural Cambodians, several villagers who were paid Wednesday for ending their squat on a palm oil plantation reappeared 48 hours later, laying claim to different parts.

The land squatting case has received wide publicity because it takes place on Virtus Green Plantations (Cambodia) Pte. Ltd., a plantation controlled here by T. Mohan, owner of Khmer Times. From Malaysia, Mr. Mohan is one of a few foreign investors in Cambodia to publicly denounce land invasions.

(02-August-2015 / KHT)

SYDNEY (AFP) – Papua New Guinea Premier Peter O’Neill yesterday pledged support in tackling human trafficking, confirming the seizure of a boat carrying alleged slaves from Cambodia and Myanmar.


Mr. O’Neill said the eight people were rescued from the fishing boat “Blissful Reefer” on July 27 in PNG waters.

Officials were questioning the 19 crew, including the captain, in the capital Port Moresby while the eight were being kept in at safe site before their return home, he said.

(02-August-2015 / KHT)

PHNOM PENH, (Xinhua) -- Cambodia has deported 1,484 illegal immigrants to their birth countries within the first seven months of 2015, the National Police's website reported Saturday, citing a senior immigration police officer.

Major General Ouk Hai Seila, director of the General Department of Immigration's investigation and procedure department, said the deportees, including 170 females, are in 42 nationalities. "Up to 1,338 (or 90 percent) of the deportees were illegal Vietnamese immigrants," the website quoted him as saying.

(01-August-2015 / Cambodia Daily)

A group of 26 local NGOs submitted a letter to King Norodom Sihamoni on Thursday calling on him to refuse to sign off on a controversial law regulating non-governmental groups in the country.

(31-July-2015 / Phnom Penh Post)

Members of the National Election Committee (NEC) met with government figures and representatives of NGOs in Phnom Penh yesterday to discuss the electoral registration process, ahead of a new electronic system set to be rolled out next year.

The meeting comes a week after the NEC sent a draft set of procedures and regulations to political parties, civil society groups and the Ministry of Interior for review, with recommendations needed to be submitted by August 6.

According to Koul Panha, executive director of Comfrel, an election monitoring NGO, while the adoption of an electronic system represents the kind of change needed, how the change will be managed remains unclear.

(31-July-2015 / Phnom Penh Post)

Cambodia has rebuked the United Nations after a UN office released a statement admonishing recent political developments in the Kingdom, while an opposition lawmaker is making a last-minute attempt to stop one of those developments from becoming law.

Last Friday, the Senate passed a draft NGO law that was viewed by rights groups as muzzling the sector, while on July 21, 11 opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party activists were sentenced to prison terms of seven to 20 years for a street protest that turned violent a year ago.

The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) lambasted both events on Monday.

(31-July-2015 / Cambodia Daily)

Human Rights Watch on Thursday added its voice to the criticism of Cambodia’s judiciary for defamation charges brought against Ny Chakyra, a senior human rights advocate who accused two judicial officials in Siem Reap province of misconduct in their handling of a land dispute.