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New chief prosecutor at Municipal Court

THE Supreme Council of the Magistracy will officially appoint Yet Chakriya as chief prosecutor of the Phnom Penh Municipal Court Friday, said Hanrot Raken, a member of the council and general prosecutor at the Court of Appeal.

Chakriya has been promoted from his previous post as prosecutor at Banteay Meanchey provincial court and will replace Ouk Savuth, who will be appointed deputy general prosecutor at the Court of Appeal.

Hanrot Raken described the move as "part of a normal reshuffle within the court system".

"He [Ouk Savuth] has not made any mistake, but he served at the Municipal Court for seven or eight years," he said.  

Municipal Court President Chiv Keng, a member of the council, said judges and prosecutors are rotated every four years.  

"Iron fist" reform

The rotation system first began as part of Prime Minister Hun Sen's "iron fist" judicial reform campaign, which began in mid-2005.

Sok Sam Oeun, executive director of the Cambodia Defenders Project, said the removal of Ouk Savuth, like the transfer of any civil servant who has been in the same position for a long time, would reduce the possibility of bias and corruption.  

Of the court system generally, he said: "The system has slowly improved in recent years, but not significantly."  

Neither Yet Chakriya nor Ouk Savuth could be reached Thursday for comment.



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