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Outcry on nine Thais

Outcry on nine Thais

AMNESTY International is calling on the Cambodian government to release or charge nine Thai nationals detained for more than three months in connection with the failed July coup attempt.

The London-based human rights group, in an October report on their plight, said it was "concerned at the continued illegal detention of nine Thai nationals.

"The nine men, all of whom have been detained since 3 July 1994, are being held without charge of trial," said the report.

"Amnesty International is calling on the Royal Government of Cambodia to release these men, or to charge them with a recognizable offense under existing laws."

It called for immediate release if there was insufficient evidence they were involved in the July 2 coup attempt. It also claimed the Phnom Penh government had ignored their basic human rights.

Last month they were moved from hotel arrest to a local prison.

The Thai government says the men are innocent - mostly unskilled workers looking for better work prospects. But Cambodian leaders allege they were communications specialists hired to assist in the coup. The human rights group claimed the Thais were being held in "very cramped conditions, with poor toilet facilities," and that Thai diplomats were only able to visit them for half an hour each week.-Reuters

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