The Ratanakkiri Provincial Court has summoned for questioning two human rights workers who have lodged court complaints against local officials for disrupting their land-rights workshop in July.
Pen Bonnar, provincial coordinator for Adhoc, and Chhim Savuth, a project coordinator for the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR), filed separate law suits over the July 26 meeting they were hosting for local villagers in Lumphat district’s Batang commune. Filed with the court on August 8, the suits accuse Batang village chief Pheng Main of defamation and commune police chief Phlang Mia of intimidation. …
Kuch Naren, P. 18
Local authorities, including a heavily armed police officer, broke up a training session on land rights in Ratanakkiri province’s Lumphat district on Friday, claiming the two groups had no legal right to hold such a meeting.
The move marks the second time in less than a week that authorities have moved to disband the land rights education program run by Adhoc and the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR).
Chhim Savuth, project coordinator for CCHR, said that roughly 50 villagers had gathered for the training sessions in a private home in Batang commune’s Batang village, when three commune police officers, the village chief, the commune chief and the deputy commune chief knocked on the door and demanded that the meeting be halted.
The two rights groups ignored the orders and tried to proceed with the class, he said, but 15 minutes later, two additional district police officers—one of whom was armed with an M-16 assault rifle appeared. …
Kuch Naren, P. 29