Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Khmer Krom released

Khmer Krom released

Khmer Krom released

NINETEEN Khmer Krom refugees were released from detention in Bangkok Monday following an intervention from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Ang Chanrith, head of the Khmer Kampuchea Krom Human Rights Organization, said the asylum seekers, who held refugee documents from the UNHCR, were released after the UN office petitioned Thai officials to recognise their status as legitimate asylum seekers.The group leaves behind in detention seven Khmer Krom who were recent arrivals to Bangkok and had not yet been registered with the UNHCR, he said.

Ang Chanrith, who has been working on the case with UN officials in Phnom Penh and Bangkok, said Khmer Krom asylum seekers in Thailand have been experiencing delays in being recognized by the UNHCR, putting them at risk of being rounded up by police.   

He said all 26 of those detained had fled Vietnam after they feared imprisonment at the hands of authorities there following public demonstrations against limits on their freedom of culture, religion and speech.

Contacted by phone, the UNHCR office in Bangkok said it had a policy of not discussing individual cases. The UNHCR office in Phnom Penh could not be reached for comment.

Rights groups and Khmer Krom activists have accused the Vietnamese and Cambodian governments of engaging in a persistent and often violent campaign to stifle the rights and distinct identity of the Khmer ethnic group originating from what is now Vietnam's southern Delta.

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia maintains 'Kun Khmer' stance despite Thailand’s boycott threat

    Cambodia has taken the position that it will use the term "Kun Khmer" to refer to the sport of kickboxing at the upcoming Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, and has removed the term Muay from all references to the sport. Despite strong reactions from the Thai

  • Chinese group tours return to Cambodia starting Feb 6

    Cambodia is among 20 countries selected by Beijing for a pilot programme allowing travel agencies to provide international group tours as well as flight and hotel packages to Chinese citizens, following a three-year ban. As the days tick down until the programme kicks off on February 6,

  • Capital-Poipet express rail project making headway

    The preliminary results of a feasibility study to upgrade the Phnom Penh-Poipet railway into Cambodia’s first express railway indicate that the project would cost more than $4 billion and would take around four years to complete. The study was carried out by China Road and

  • Thai boxers to join SEA Games’ Kun Khmer event

    The Cambodian SEA Games Organising Committee (CAMSOC) – together with the Kun Khmer International Federation (KKIF) and Khmer Boxing Federation – have achieved a “great success” by including Kun Khmer in the upcoming biennial multi-sports event on its home soil for the first time, said a senior

  • Bullets to bracelets: Siem Reap man makes waste from war wearable

    Jewellery is often made from valuable gemstones like emeralds or diamonds and precious metals like gold or silver, or valueless things like animal horns. But a man in Siem Reap has approached the manufacture of delicate pieces from a different angle. His unique form of

  • 61% of 2022 imports came from just 3 markets

    The three largest exporters to Cambodia – mainland China, Vietnam and Thailand – accounted for 60.94 per cent of the Kingdom’s total merchandise imports last year, at $18.245 billion, which was up 11.99 per cent over 2021, according to the General Department of Customs and Excise. Cambodia’s total imports