Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Subedi to raise Boeung Kak case

Subedi to raise Boeung Kak case

UN rights envoy Surya Subedi talks to media after exiting a UN office
UN rights envoy Surya Subedi talks to media after exiting a UN office in Phnom Penh yesterday. Vireak Mai

Subedi to raise Boeung Kak case

UN special rapporteur for Cambodia Surya Subedi has promised to raise Boeung Kak activists’ complaints over the loss of their land with government officials during his six-day visit to the country.

Despite a ban on public gatherings in the capital, about 200 Boeung Kak villagers gathered unhindered by security forces at the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Phnom Penh yesterday to deliver a petition to Subedi.

The petition called for intervention in their land dispute and urged the Cambodian government to free 23 human rights activists and workers detained earlier this month.

Thousands of people have been evicted from Boeung Kak to make way for a $79 million development proposed by a company headed by ruling party senator Lao Meng Khin.

“In order to ensure the people in this country get full freedom in accordance with international standards, I will do my best to bring all of your concerns to discuss in the meeting which participated by donor countries, the international community and Cambodian government in the near future,” Subedi said after receiving the petition.

At least four people were killed and more than 20 injured when riot police fired on protesting garment workers on January 3.

Chan Puthisak, a representative of 48 Boeung Kak families, was arrested along with 22 others during the unrest.

The whereabouts of the 23 detainees was unknown for more than a week until it was finally confirmed they had been jailed in Kampong Cham province.

Hean Sokha, Puthisak’s wife, said she hoped Subedi’s influence could help the chances of her husband’s release.

“I believe that Subedi’s intervention to the international community and donor countries will urge the government to release my husband, human rights activists and 20 workers.”

Am Sam Ath, a legal adviser for Licadho, said Subedi’s arrival renewed the relatives’ optimism that they might see the release of their loved ones and solutions to “the chronic land disputes and salary crisis”.

MOST VIEWED

  • Prince injured, wife dies after accident

    THE wife of former First Prime Minister Prince Norodom Ranariddh, Ouk Phalla, 39, died while the prince was “severely” injured following a road accident in Preah Sihanouk province’s Prey Nub district on Sunday morning, officials said. Rananriddh, who is also the president of the Funcinpec

  • Guards protest dismissals, reject claims of sharing naked photos of child

    Some 20 former security guards at the US Embassy in Phnom Penh protested on Tuesday against their dismissal. They accused their employers of falsely claiming they had viewed and shared child pornography from their mobile phones as grounds for their termination. In total, 32 personnel were dismissed

  • Bun Heang mocks US, threatens its citizens in scathing open letter

    After being hit with sanctions from the US Department of Treasury, Cambodian General Hing Bun Heang said he would retaliate against any US national who does not respect his country’s sovereignty, has ambitions to invade Cambodia or incites “traitors” in the Kingdom to do

  • Funcinpec urges probe into deadly Preah Sihanouk accident

    THE Funcinpec party has urged the government, especially the Ministry of Interior, to investigate the traffic accident in Preah Sihanouk province which left Prince Norodom Ranariddh badly injured and his wife Ouk Phalla dead. Funcinpec Vice President You Hokry told reporters at Botum Votey pagoda,