Over a hundred garment workers from Kampong Speu province’s Agile Sweater factory in Chbar Mon city marched to the provincial hall yesterday to demand the release of two union officials who were arrested and detained on Wednesday for incitement, destruction of factory property and faking documents.
The factory had accused the two unionists, Y Thary and Uong Phary, of causing unrest and threatening to beat up workers who would not join a new union branch they had created.
However, the protestors say the charges stem from the two unionists’ attempt to set up the new union following their resignation from the factory’s main union, which is headed by an “adviser” to the factory.
Yam Thai San, president of the Union Federation of ASEAN Workers – the union the two had tried to start a local branch of – said their arrest was a “great injustice”, and pledged to march to Prime Minister Hun Sen’s house by next week if they remained behind bars.
But Sam Sak, chief of the provincial police’s serious crimes unit, said that police were seeking to arrest more people involved in the case.