Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Political violence

Political violence

Political violence

I exhort the Government and parliamentarians, if they are serious about curbing political

violence preceding and following an election, to make into law a bill that will shift

the burden of proof from the victim's family or political party to the Government.

Presently, any act of violence against a political figure or supporter is assumed

NOT to be political. The victim's family is left with the burden to prove that the

act was politically motivated, an impossible burden of proof in reality, because

it is so easy for the Government to dismiss it as otherwise, eg witchcraft, personal

feud.

This law would shift the burden of proof.

In effect the law would say: Within the period of six months prior to an election

and two months after that election [for example], any person who is well known to

be politically active and is injured/maimed/killed within that period, will be AUTOMATICALLY

PRESUMED to be injured/maimed/killed because of his/her political activities [opposite

of current state]. Unless strong evidence surfaced to prove the contrary, the Government

(ie Ministry of Interior) is responsible for compensating the victim's family in

the amount of [$25,000 for example] for the death of the person to violence within

this period.

I've noticed an interesting trend: Until now, it used to be that "accidents"

or "robberies" only befell opposition figures. But now, it must be either

that the magic spell has lost its power to protect CPP activists/supporters, or that

the ruling party has become more shrewd in sacrificing a CPP person here and there

in the mix of every ten opposition figures injured/maimed/killed. (To keep those

nosy foreigners guessing and confused!)

This law would resolve either scenario-be it an opposition or a CPP individual, the

burden is on the Government to protect and compensate the victim or his/her family.

- Theary Seng - Cambodian-American Attorney - Washington, DC

MOST VIEWED

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Long way to go before Cambodia gets a ‘smart city’

    Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang will struggle to attain smart city status without adopting far reaching master plans, according to officials tasked with implementing the program. The brainchild of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), the smart city program seeks to link up

  • Japan bank buys major stake in ANZ Royal Bank

    Japan's largest bank acquired more than half of ANZ’s shares in Cambodia on Thursday, according to a statement from Kith Meng’s Royal Group. Japan's JTrust Bank, announced that they had acquired a 55% of stake in ANZ Royal Bank. According to a Royal Group

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears
    Internet communications to pass through gov’t-owned firm

    The government has ordered all domestic and international internet traffic in the Kingdom to pass through a Data Management Centre (DMC) that has been newly created by the state-owned Telecom Cambodia, in a move some have claimed is an attempt to censor government critics. Spokesman