Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Hundreds pray for release of unionists

Hundreds pray for release of unionists

Hundreds pray for release of unionists

Hundreds of workers from the Agile Sweater factory in Kampong Speu province gathered in front of the provincial court yesterday, praying for authorities to release five unionists arrested at the factory on Tuesday.

The workers lit incense sticks as they massed in prayer, a video of the incident showed.

“We pray and ask for the director of the provincial court to release [the five] for this new year of 2016,” a woman said into a loudspeaker.

On Tuesday morning, members of the national Collective Union of Movement of Workers came to assist workers at the Agile Sweater factory who have been protesting since last month.

The unionists claimed they were then attacked by thugs from the factory’s pro-employer union, although authorities disputed the account and arrested five union officials for allegedly violently blocking workers from going back to work.

The five unionists were charged with intentional violence on Tuesday, said provincial prosecutor Keo Sothea.

An Thin, provincial coordinator for rights group Adhoc, said the arrests have heated up an already-volatile situation.

“It is unjust that the five were arrested, because they were not violent, while the police allowed those who beat them to run away,” he said.

“The police colluded with the factory to arrest unionists in order to prevent workers from continuing to strike, but it turned out that made the workers even angrier.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Breaking: US House passes 'Cambodia Democracy Act'

    The US House of Representatives in Washington, DC, on Monday, passed the “HR 526 Cambodia Democracy Act”, also known as the Cambodia Democracy Act of 2019. If signed off by the president, the bill will allow two major sets of action to be taken against high-ranking Cambodian

  • ‘Zero-dollar’ tours under fire

    Minister of Tourism Thong Khon has blamed “zero-dollar” tour operators for the decrease in foreign tourists to Angkor Archaeological Park in the first half of this year and has called for action against them. Angkor Archaeological Park received 1.24 million foreign visitors in the first half

  • Breaking: Rubbish found packed inside 83 containers at S'ville port

    Eighty-three containers packed with rubbish were broken open at Sihanoukville Autonomous Port by joint authorities on Tuesday. The origin of the containers has yet to be ascertained, Ministry of Environment spokesman Neth Pheaktra said. Pheaktra, who is also the ministry’s secretary of state, said

  • Some jobs off limits to foreigners from August

    Beginning from the second week of August, foreigners will be banned from driving taxis and tuk-tuks, as well as being motorcycle delivery drivers, street food vendors, hairdressers and product distributors among other lower-income jobs. Some white-collar jobs such as the head of human resources will