Subscribe Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - No abuse at orphanage: police

No abuse at orphanage: police

No abuse at orphanage: police

04b orphanage
A boy rides a bicycle in front of the Love in Action orphanage in Phnom Penh’s Meanchey district yesterday. Photograph: Vireak Mai/Phnom Penh Post

Although anti-trafficking group SISHA last Friday said beatings were among the serious complaints leading to the removal of 21 children from the Love in Action orphanage in Phnom Penh, police said yesterday that they were aware of just one minor instance of physical abuse at the orphanage by a low-ranking staff member.

A press release distributed Tuesday evening by SISHA and attributed to the Cambodian National Police as well as SISHA stated that “some children were physically assaulted and ran away from the orphanage.”

But according to Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Police chief Pol Pithey, the physical abuse was “not a big case.”

“A few children had an argument over portions of rice, and a cook very slightly injured them.”

The fact that children were squabbling over food was more indicative of the reasons for the intervention, which included poor management and the orphanage’s unregistered status, he said.

“Therefore, she forwarded her children to the social affairs department . . . We have no information about human trafficking in the orphanage,” he added.

Pithey said that whether the orphanage could be reopened was up to the Ministry of Social Affairs. Ministry officials could not be reached for comment yesterday.

The whereabouts of seven children who lived in the orphanage but ran away shortly before the closure are still unknown, but police believe they have a few clues in the matter, he added.

The Love In Action International Office in Australia said its management was “in the very early stages of negotiations” about the orphanage, and declined to comment further.

When asked for clarification about the complaints against the orphanage, a SISHA representative said: “We cannot release details on the allegations, as the investigation is ongoing.”



  • 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