Subscribe Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Clash erupts at SL factory

Clash erupts at SL factory

Clash erupts at SL factory

Security guards clashed yesterday with workers from two SL Garment factories that supply Levi’s, Gap and H&M, as the number of employees protesting exceeded 5,500 – or more than 90 per cent of the staff.

Protester Kim Voeun, 32, said security guards, in the presence of about 300 police and military police officers, had prevented workers congregating outside the SL1 factory in the capital’s Meanchey district.

“They pushed the female workers [on to the street]. I was hit in the stomach. I coughed up blood, and I still have chest pain,” she said.

Workers and the company have been in dispute over conditions since strikes began on May 12.

Long negotiations involving officials from the Ministry of Social Affairs broke down on Tuesday, and an Arbitration Council ruling that ordered the protesters back to work has failed to end the strikes.

Unmet demands include transport and living allowances, an attendance bonus and for legal complaints against union officials to be withdrawn.

Ek Sopheakdey, legal officer for the Coalition of Cambodian Apparel Workers Democratic Union (C.CAWDU), said about 300 armed police and military police patrolled the strike yesterday.

C.CAWDU president Ath Thorn rejected claims the company made on Tuesday that the strike would cause major brands to be concerned about investing in Cambodia.

“I’ve talked with some of these buyers. They say it’s fine, because workers have rights and they’re not asking too much. They will not leave.”

The Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia (GMAC) voiced similar concerns about the future of big-brand investment in Cambodia last month.

GMAC urged the government to crack down on the growing number of trade unions that were using “mafia-style” tactics to incite violent and “illegal” strikes.

To contact the reporter on this story: Chhay Channyda at [email protected]


  • Professor beaten by mob in Phnom Penh after alleged hit-and-run

    Updated with new information: 6:44am, Tuesday March 13 2018 A university professor accused of a hit-and-run has been transported to Vietnam with serious head injuries after he was brutally beaten by a mob in Phnom Penh late Sunday afternoon. A video of the attack shows a group

  • American ‘fugitive’ arrested in Cambodia outside of US Embassy

    An American citizen was arrested on request by the US Embassy in Phnom Penh on Tuesday, according to Cambodian police. Major General Uk Hei Sela, chief of investigations at the Department of Immigration, identified the man as American Jan Sterling Hagen, and said he was

  • One Australian, one Cambodian killed in explosion at military base

    Updated: 5:20pm, Friday 16 March 2018 An Australian tourist and a Cambodian soldier were killed in an explosion on Thursday afternoon at an army base in Cambodia’s Kampong Speu province. The Australian, whom the government initially identified as a technical demining expert in his 40s, and

  • Australians protest Asean summit visit by PM Hun Sen

    Hundreds of protesters gathered in Sydney’s Hyde Park on Friday to protest against Cambodian strongman Hun Sen, who claimed to have been gifted millions of dollars by the Australian government ahead of a special Asean summit this weekend. An estimated 300 protesters, the majority of