Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Union leader warns of protests



Union leader warns of protests

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Rong Chhun speaks at a press conference on Tuesday. Hong Menea

Union leader warns of protests

A prominent union leader on Tuesday threatened to hold a large-scale demonstration if the newly elected government ignores the European Union’s resolution demanding a political compromise between the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) and the court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP).

At a press conference, Cambodian Confederation of Unions (CCU) president Rong Chhun urged the government to accept the EU resolution to avoid economic consequences of possible sanctions, which include a suspension of the Everything But Arms (EBA) scheme.

A compromise, he said, will help Cambodia sustain its economic growth and retain the jobs of around 800,000 garment workers.

Chhun expressed concerns about the future of garment workers who might lose their jobs and other benefits if the government refused to comply with the EU, one of the largest markets for its garment products.

“If the EU ends Cambodia’s tariff-free exports and imposes an economic embargo, garment workers will lose their jobs and Cambodia will fall into a crisis.

“I think politicians from the ruling CPP and opposition CNRP must sit and talk to find political solutions and organise a free and fair election to avoid political and economic crises in Cambodia,” he said.

Council of Ministers spokesman Phay Siphan said Chhun’s threat of a demonstration is just a pretext used to cause social chaos or to serve foreign political interests.

“The authorities at all levels will take legal action according to the law to maintain national sovereignty, independence and solidarity. Let me remind Rong Chhun and his group that Cambodia is not an EU colony. Cambodia has had very good cooperation with the EU for decades,” he said.

Former CNRP lawmaker Ou Chanrath said that whatever decision the EU makes, it is meant to restore democracy in Cambodia.

“The government should follow the EU’s decisions and then just do its best. A demonstration is a reflection of the will [of the people]. When they can hardly survive, and their freedom and livelihoods are affected, it’s just a matter of time before they stand up [to the government],” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Kingdom accepts Chinese vaccine, PM first to get jab

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said China would offer Cambodia an immediate donation of one million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine produced by the Sinopharm company. In an audio message addressing the public on the night of January 15, he said Cambodia has accepted the offer and

  • Reeling in Cambodia’s real estate sector

    A new norm sets the scene but risks continue to play out in the background A cold wind sweeps through the streets of Boeung Trabek on an early January morning as buyers and traders engage in commerce under bright blue skies. From a distance, the

  • Hun Sen: Lakes filled in for national developments

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has announced continued operations to fill some lakes in Phnom Penh to create land for developments, though he is against the unrelated practice of damming rivers or blocking waterways. Speaking at the inauguration of the Ministry of Public Works and Transport

  • Koh Preus upgrades 70% complete

    Initial construction of a nearly $30 million tourism infrastructure project on Preah Sihanouk province’s Koh Preus Island is “about 70 per cent complete”, according to an official with the developer. Heng Thou, construction site manager of Angela Real Estate Co Ltd (ARE), told The Post that

  • Local media loses a giant, and The Post a great friend

    Cheang Sokha, a gifted and streetwise reporter who rose to the highest ranks of Cambodian media and was beloved for his sharp intelligence, world-class humour and endless generosity, died on Friday in his hometown of Phnom Penh. He was 42. His wife, Sok Sophorn, said he

  • Cambodia, India agree to start direct flights, tourism exchanges

    Cambodia and India have agreed to start direct flight connections and promote closer tourism exchanges and cooperation in all areas after the Covid-19 saga comes to a close. The agreement was reached during a meeting between Cambodian Minister of Tourism Thong Khon and newly-minted Indian