Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Telecom Ministry defends law

Telecom Ministry defends law

A man browses the web at an internet cafe in Phnom Penh.
A man browses the web at an internet cafe in Phnom Penh. Hong Menea

Telecom Ministry defends law

The Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications yesterday rejected concerns that the controversial Telecommunications Law passed last year gave the government unchecked powers to secretly eavesdrop.

Licadho published a briefing paper on Thursday describing the law as full of “serious threats” to privacy and free expression.

Of particular concern to the rights group was Article 97, which allowed for “secret surveillance”, providing its practitioners had approval from a “legitimate authority”.

The briefing paper argued the vagueness of “legitimate authority” as a term left the door open “to create a power to secretly eavesdrop without any public accountability or safeguards to protect individuals’ right to privacy”.

In a statement released yesterday, the Telecommunications Ministry, responsible for administering the law, countered by insisting a definition of the term in Article 3 of the law was sufficiently narrow.

“With permission of legitimate authorities refers to telecoms operations by authorities involved in national security and defence work,” the statement reads.

Representatives of Licadho were not reachable for comment yesterday evening.

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • 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

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears

    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