Cambodia: Bail denied to imprisoned Unionists
Brussels, 11 February 2014 (ITUC OnLine): The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) deplores the denial of bail once again for the 21 Cambodian workers who remain in prison. An appeal was immediately filed with the Supreme Court. In the meantime, however, the investigative judge will set a trial date, which could be weeks but perhaps months from now. Some of the jailed workers recently started a hunger strike to protest their detention.
"Trade unions around the world have sent a clear message to the government that these workers must be released. We are deeply disappointed that the government continues to detain these workers for their participation in the strikes and protests that took place in January this year. We remain particularly concerned for Vorn Pao, the president of IDEA, who remains in jail despite serious health concerns. We fully expect the government to release the workers and drop the charges," explained Sharan Burrow, General Secretary of the ITUC.
The ITUC undertook a high-level mission to Cambodia in January to call for the release of the jailed workers, for an independent investigation into the killing and wounding of workers in January, for all parties to respect freedom of association, and for the government to increase the minimum wage from the unsustainable $100 per month as soon as possible. The ITUC, together with IndustriALL and UNI, and with international and Cambodian NGOs, will continue to work to until these goals are reached.