World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


As violence flares, UN rights expert urges Cambodia lift ban

As violence flares, UN rights expert urges Cambodia to lift protest ban

16 July 2014

The United Nations expert on the situation of human rights in Cambodia urged all sides to immediately exercise utmost calm and restraint, and reiterated his call for an end to the official ban on demonstrations.

“Yesterday, Freedom Park – a symbol of democracy in Phnom Penh – once again became a witness to violence and an antithesis to freedom,” UN Special Rapporteur Surya Subedi told reporters in Geneva today.

According to the UN Human Rights Office (OHCHR), what began as a peaceful protests led by members of the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), quickly escalated into violent clashes yesterday, leaving up to 40 people injured, mostly private security guards. As it stands now, five CNRP Members of Parliament-elect and one CNRP activist have been arrested.

“I call on the Government to guarantee the constitutional right to peaceful assembly for all Cambodians with immediate effect by lifting the existing restrictions on assembly, and to ensure the fair treatment of those arrested in strict accordance with the human rights standards relations to the administration of justice,” Mr. Subedi stressed.

All parties must exercise non-violent means of expression and uphold peace and order in the exercise of freedom of speech and peaceful assembly. Recalling January’s “tragic incidents” that resulted in a demonstration ban in Phnom Penh, he urged the Cambodian Government to facilitate peaceful demonstration and to exercise utmost restraint towards protestors.

“Yesterday’s events have shown that the shrinking democratic space in Cambodia since January is having negative effects on the enjoyment of human rights for all,” Mr. Subedi said.

During his last mission to Cambodia, Mr. Subedi has also expressed concern to the Government regarding the role of district security guards in policing public demonstrations, saying they were private individuals who appeared to operate outside any clear accountability framework.

“Tolerance is crucial for the future of democracy in Cambodia,” he said.
While barricading Freedom Park has no justification in law, he also urged those seeking to exercise their right to peaceful assembly to remain peaceful and respectful of others’ human rights.

Appointed by the UN Human Rights Council as the UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Cambodia in March 2009, Mr. Surya P. Subedi serves in his individual capacity and works independently of any government or organisation.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The French Election Result

Macron is shaping as the third major test case, after Bill Clinton, after Tony Blair – on whether the aim of ‘progressive social policy’ and realities of ‘neo-liberal economic settings’ can be made to credibly co-exist within the same sentence, let alone within the decrees from the Elysee Palace. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Snap Election In Britain

The election call is entirely opportunistic and self-serving and will – regardless of the outcome – put Britain in a worse negotiating position for managing its Brexit. More>>

Turkey: Observers Say Erdogan’s Constitutional Referendum Flawed

Lack of equal opportunities, one-sided media coverage and limitations on fundamental freedoms created unlevel playing field in Turkey’s constitutional referendum, international observers say. More>>

ALSO:

Westminster: NZ PM Condemns London Attack

“London is a place many thousands of New Zealanders have visited and called home, and where many more have friends and family based, so this attack feels very close to home,” Mr English says. More>>

ALSO:

Amnesty: Campaign Mass Hangings And Extermination At Syrian Prison

A chilling new report by Amnesty International exposes the Syrian government’s calculated campaign of extrajudicial executions by mass hangings at Saydnaya Prison. Between 2011 and 2015, every week and often twice a week, groups of up to 50 people ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news