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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - In this issue

In this issue

Garment strikes are over, problems aren’t
People in the Kingdom’s biggest export sector are still dealing with the fallout from the 4-day strikes

I see that the government is paying attention to stop the problem peacefully by sitting to negotiate, and I agreed to stop striking if the employers agree to negotiate.”

- Ath Thun, head of the Cambodian Labour Confederation

We shut the door for minimum wage, but we always made it very clear that we will negotiate the other allowances.”

- Ken Loo, secretary general of the Garment Manufacturers’ Association in Cambodia

The workers said that if the factory owners don’t allow them to return to work after the meeting between the unionists and the Social Affairs Ministry officials, a big strike will start again.”

- Keo Boeun, a union representative at the Goldfame Enterprise factory, after workers there were fired upon arriving for work late last week.

[Employers are] prohibited from imposing any sanction on a worker because of his participation in a strike,”

- Excerpt from article 333 of Cambodia’s labour code.

Sam Rainsy v. Hun Sen
BY THE NUMBERS

12 The number of years in prison that Sam Rainsy is facing after he was found guilty on charges of disinformation and falsifying public documents and given 10 additional years on top of the two-year sentence he was given for his involvement in uprooting markers on the Vietnamese border.
300-500 The number of metres inside Cambodian territory that internationally accepted maps show the markers have been placed, according to Sam Rainsy.
0 The amount of room for negotiation regarding the sentences given to Sam Rainsy, according to Hun Sen.
18 The number of months Sam Rainsy was sentenced to, and didn’t serve, after being found guilty in 2005 of defamation.
9,936 The distance, in kilometres, from Phnom Penh to Paris, where Sam Rainsy announced in a televised conference that he was filing complaints against Hun Sen and other officials for 1997 grenade attacks on an opposition rally.
4 Grenades that were reportedly thrown into the crowd gathered at the rally.
16 People who died in the attacks, according to investigations.
100 People who were wounded in the attacks.
5 Years since Sam Rainsy last filed these charges against Hun Sen in US and French courts, while also in exile, eventually dropping the case after receiving a Royal Pardon from King Sihamoni at the request of Hun Sen.
0 The number of court cases that Sam Rainsy has won in the world, in his lifetime, according to Phay Siphan.
1 The number of functioning political parties that will exist if the trend of silencing opposition politicians continues, according to Ou Virak, president of the Cambodian Centre for Human Rights in comments made last week.

Not Exactly
News Trends
Japan trying to turn the tide in bad times

UNFRIENDLY NEIGHBOURS
Despite Japan giving in to demands to free a Chinese fishing boat captain, tension between the two countries continue to mount as China met their neighbour’s diplomatic move with further demands for an official apology. AFP
THROWING MONEY AT IT
Japan’s Prime Minister Naoto Kan has ordered a supplementary budget, likely to be between 4 trillion yen and 5 trillion yen (US$47 billion to $60 billion) for a massive stimulus, hoping to shore up his nation’s flagging economy. AFP

Major changes happening in microfinance

A NEW PLAYER IN DEPOSITS
The Kingdom’s largest micro-lender, Prasac, will launch deposit-taking services from early next year, representing another step toward its aim of becoming a commercial bank within five years. They plan to begin the new services by 2011. NGOUN SOVAN

INSURANCE INITIATIVES
Regulations to cover large micro-insurance initiatives in Cambodia have been officially drafted and may boost the insurance industry. Micro-insurance – giving low-cost insurance to low-income populations – has so far been limited in Cambodia. NGOUN SOVAN

Further expansion of already massive empires

STILL THE KING OF POP

A virtual planet devoted to Michael Jackson is being created online as a world where fans can go to celebrate the life of the late King of Pop. Planet Michael will be an internet world based on the artist’s music, life and interests. AFP

LOW COSTS FOR EVERYONE!
Wal-Mart announced their African expansion
bid in a transaction that would add 290 stores
in 13 African countries. AFP

Big Stories
IN their first face-to-face meeting since the resumption of full diplomatic ties last month, Prime Minister Hun Sen and his Thai counterpart, Abhisit Vejjajiva, pledged to reduce tensions at the countries’ border and rehabilitate their relationship, officials said earlier this week.
AFGHANISTAN began counting votes on Sunday in parliamentary elections tainted by allegations of fraud and a low voter turnout after deadly Taliban violence.
US President Barack Obama called for greater urgency in the fight against the world’s social ills as a UN poverty summit ended last week with tens of billions of dollars of pledges but lingering pessimism about the impact. AFP
LOCAL French-language weekly newspaper Cambodge Soir has been forced to close due to financial concerns, its management announced Monday.

What's the biggest story? Have your say at angkorone.com/lift
Laugh a little
A NEW Zealand school that staged a possum-throwing contest has come under fire from animal rights activists.

The contest, in which students swung possum carcasses over their heads and hurled them across the playground, was unacceptable, the New Zealand animal rights groups said.

Government officials said they received three complaints about the competition at Colyton School and would raise concerns with its teachers. AFP

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