A Change of Guard

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Friday, 27 March 2015


Extract from Bertrand Russell's 'Political Ideals', Chapter I.

"Political and social institutions are to be judged by the good or harm that they do to individuals. Do they encourage creativeness rather than possessiveness? Do they embody or promote a spirit of reverence between human beings? Do they preserve self-respect?"

In dark days, men need a clear faith and a well-grounded hope; and as the outcome of these, the calm courage which takes no account of hardships by the way. The times through which we are passing have afforded to many of us a confirmation of our faith. We see that the things we had thought evil are really evil, and we know more definitely than we ever did before the directions in which men must move if a better world is to arise on the ruins of the one which is now hurling itself into destruction. We see that men's political dealings with one another are based on wholly wrong ideals, and can only be saved by quite different ideals from continuing to be a source of suffering, devastation, and sin.

Political ideals must be based upon ideals for the individual life. The aim of politics should be to make the lives of individuals as good as possible. There is nothing for the politician to consider outside or above the various men, women, and children who compose the world. The problem of politics is to adjust the relations of human beings in such a way that each severally may have as much of good in his existence as possible. And this problem requires that we should first consider what it is that we think good in the individual life.

To begin with, we do not want all men to be alike. We do not want to lay down a pattern or type to which men of all sorts are to be made by some means or another to approximate. This is the ideal of the impatient administrator. A bad teacher will aim at imposing his opinion, and turning out a set of pupils all of whom will give the same definite answer on a doubtful point. Mr. Bernard Shaw is said to hold that Troilus and Cressida is the best of Shakespeare's plays. Although I disagree with this opinion, I should welcome it in a pupil as a sign of individuality; but most teachers would not tolerate such a heterodox view. Not only teachers, but all commonplace persons in authority, desire in their subordinates that kind of uniformity which makes their actions easily predictable and never inconvenient. The result is that they crush initiative and individuality when they can, and when they cannot, they quarrel with it.


It is not one ideal for all men, but a separate ideal for each separate man, that has to be realized if possible. Every man has it in his being to develop into something good or bad: there is a best possible for him, and a worst possible. His circumstances will determine whether his capacities for good are developed or crushed, and whether his bad impulses are strengthened or gradually diverted into better channels.

But although we cannot set up in any detail an ideal of character which is to be universally applicable—although we cannot say, for instance, that all men ought to be industrious, or self-sacrificing, or fond of music—there are some broad principles which can be used to guide our estimates as to what is possible or desirable.

Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

School of Vice: Note the Vietnamese army uniform and helmet hung on the wall of the house in this interview with the Vietnamese ELC representative, indicating foreign military presence deep inside Cambodian territory. This presence - rather than that of hired private security personnel - would suggest to observers that the granting of these so-called "economic land concessions" is undoubtedly political in nature before and above any commercial or economic consideration.


Cambodian prime minister criticizes Michelle Obama visit

First Lady Michelle Obama was criticized by Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen after the First Lady's visit with 10 Cambodian schoolgirls as part of the White House's "Let Girls Learn" initiative. File Photo by Pat Benic/UPI

The first lady's visit to Cambodia was part of the the White House's "Let Girls Learn" initiative but her cause rang hollow to Cambodia's outspoken prime minister.

"School facilities are lacking in toilets and washing facilities. Girls who return home to use the latrine sometimes don't return to finish the school day, said Kim Dara, head of the Cambodia office of World Education."

By Elizabeth Shim   |   March 26, 2015 upi

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia, March 26 (UPI) -- Michelle Obama's tour of Asia to promote girls' education was marked by blunt criticism from Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen, who said the first lady was "playing around" and using hopeful rhetoric about making improvements but not guaranteeing aid.

The Phnom Penh Post reported that Hun Sen told U.S. embassy personnel and USAID workers Wednesday that Obama's Saturday visit with 10 schoolgirls in the Cambodian city of Siem Reap, part of the White House's "Let Girls Learn" initiative, was good but not enough. He said the U.S. government should promise scholarships – if it sincerely seeks improvements to education reform in Cambodia.

"Her mission is very good, but I suggest the United States should help completely and not play like this," the Cambodian prime minister said.

Obama's visit has led to a request from his education minister on Tuesday for state university scholarships for the 10 students who met with Obama on Saturday.

"What if she chose 300 students? It would be death. I don't have that money to give."

The girls' education through the 12th grade is being financially supported by a Room to Read, a U.S. NGO that promotes literacy in Cambodia and other countries.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Sam Rainsy: "The unity between Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha is unbreakable" សម រង្ស៊ី " ចំណងសាមគ្គីភាពរវាង សម រង្ស៊ី និង កឹម សុខា គ្មានថ្ងៃបែកបាក់ "

២៤ មីនា ២០១៥ / 24 March 2015សម រង្ស៊ី " ចំណងសាមគ្គីភាពរវាង សម រង្ស៊ី និង កឹម សុខា គ្មានថ្ងៃបែកបាក់ "។ពិធីជួបសំណេះសំណាលជាមួយប្រជាពលរដ្ឋខ្មែរដែលកំពុងរស់នៅទីក្រុង ប៉ារីស ប្រទេសបារាំង កាលពីថ្ងៃទី ២១ ខែមីនា ឆ្នាំ២0១៥។
Posted by Sam Rainsy on Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Hun Sen's daughter and Sok An's son join ventures with tycoon Choeung Sopheap (Yeay Phu) [It's a conflict of interests] កូនស្រី​បុរស​ខ្លាំង​និង​កូនប្រុស​ឯកឧត្តម​ សុខ​ អាន​ ពង្រីក​បណ្តាញ​រកស៊ី​ជា​ប្រព័ន្ធ​ជាមួយ​សាច់ញាតិ​យាយ​ភូ​

Posted by  on March 26, 2015
កូនស្រី​បង្កើត​ទាំង​ពីរ​របស់​សម្តេច​អគ្គមហាសេនាបតី​តេ​ជោ​ ហ៊ុន​ សែន​ ហៅ​បុរស​ខ្លាំង​ ជា​នាយក​រដ្ឋមន្ត្រី​នៃ​ព្រះរាជាណាចក្រ​កម្ពុជា​ដ៏​មាន​ឥទ្ធិពល​ និង​កូនប្រុស​បង្កើត​របស់​ឯកឧត្តម​បណ្ឌិត​សភាចា​រ្យ​ សុខ​ អាន​ ឧបនាយករដ្ឋមន្ត្រី​ រដ្ឋមន្ត្រី​ទទួល​បន្ទុក​ទីស្តីការគណៈរដ្ឋមន្ត្រី​ ដែល​ជា​ដន្លងដងស្នែង​ជាមួយ​បុរស​ខ្លាំង​នោះ​ បាន​បើក​ក្រុមហ៊ុន​ពង្រីក​បណ្តាញ​រកស៊ី​ជា​ប្រព័ន្ធ​យ៉ាង​ធំ​ទូលំទូលាយ​ជាមួយ​សាច់ញាតិ​លោក​ជំទាវ​ ឧកញ៉ា​ ជឹ​ង​ សុភាព​ ហៅ​យាយ​ភូ​ ខណៈ​លោក​ជំទាវ​ ឧកញ៉ា​ ជឹ​ង​ សុភាព​ ជា​អនុប្រធាន​កាកបាទក្រហមកម្ពុជា​ និង​ត្រូវជា​ភរិយា​របស់​ឯកឧត្តម​ ឧកញ៉ា​ ឡាវ​ ម៉េ​ង​ឃី​ន​ សមាជិក​ព្រឹទ្ធសភា​នៃ​ព្រះរាជាណាចក្រ​កម្ពុជា​ មក​ពី​គណបក្ស​ប្រជាជន​កម្ពុជា​ ត្រូវ​បាន​គេ​ទទួលស្គាល់​ថា​ គឺជា​ឈ្មួញ​ដ៏​ល្បីឈ្មោះ​ និង​ស្និទ្ធ​ជាមួយ​ក្រុម​គ្រួសារ​របស់​បុរស​ខ្លាំង​បំផុត​អស់​រយៈពេល​ជា​ច្រើន​ឆ្នាំ​មក​ហើយ​ ។​
​លោកស្រី​ ហ៊ុន​ ម៉ា​ណា​ អាយុ​៣៤​ឆ្នាំ​ (​ត្រូវជា​ភរិយា​របស់​លោក​ឧត្តមសេនីយ៍ឯក​ប៉ូលិស​ ឌី​ វិជ្ជា​ ដែល​ជា​កូនប្រុស​បង្កើត​របស់​សព​នាយ​ឧត្តមសេនីយ៍​ផ្កាយ​មាស​៤​ប៉ូលិស​ ហុ​ក​ ឡង​ឌី​)​ និង​លោកស្រី​ ហ៊ុន​ ម៉ា​លី​ អាយុ​៣១​ឆ្នាំ​ (​ត្រូវជា​ភរិយា​របស់​លោក​ សុខ​ ពុទ្ធិ​វុ​ធ​ ដែល​ជា​កូនប្រុស​បង្កើត​របស់​ឯកឧត្តម​ សុខ​ អាន​)​ ត្រូវជា​កូនស្រី​បង្កើត​របស់​បុរស​ខ្លាំង​ បាន​ក្លាយជា​អ្នកជំនួញ​វ័យក្មេង​ដ៏​មាន​ឥទ្ធិពល​នា​សម័យ​បច្ចុប្បន្ន​នេះ​ ដោយ​បាន​កាន់កាប់​ជា​ប្រធាន​ក្រុមប្រឹក្សាភិបាល​ និង​អភិបាល​ក្រុមហ៊ុន​ឯកជន​ជា​ច្រើន​ ព្រមទាំង​បាន​ពង្រីក​បណ្តាញ​ក្រុមហ៊ុន​រកស៊ី​ជា​ប្រព័ន្ធ​ជាមួយ​សាច់ញាតិ​យាយ​ភូ​ គួរ​ឲ្យ​ចាប់អារម្មណ៍​ រួម​មាន​ ៖​ លោក​ឧកញ៉ា​ ជឹ​ង​ ធាន​សេង​,​ លោក​ឧកញ៉ា​ ជឹ​ង​ ធាន​គាត​ និង​លោកស្រី​ឧកញ៉ា​ ជឹ​ង​ សុ​គ​ន្ធា​វី​…​ជាដើម​ ។​ល​។​

Hun Sen made Kem Sokha a hero after he threatened him with arrest

២៥ មីនា ២០១៥ / 25 March 2015, 23:00លោក កឹម សុខា បានមកដល់អាកាសយានដ្ឋានអន្តរជាតិភ្នំពេញ នៅម៉ោង ១១ យប់នេះ។
Posted by Sam Rainsy on Wednesday, March 25, 2015
លោក កឹម សុខា បានមកដល់ព្រលានយន្តហោះហើយយើងសង្កេតឃើញថាមានប្រជាពលរដ្ឋយ៉ាងច្រើនកុះករមកទទួល ១១:០០នាទីយប់
Posted by Sem Choeurn on Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Hun Sen knocks Obama visit [Why can't Hun Sen see the benefits that Mrs Obama's visit would bring to Cambodia because her visit gives free tourism promotion to Cambodia and Angkor Wat?] លោក ហ៊ុន សែន ខក​បំណង​ចំពោះ​ដំណើរ​ទស្សនកិច្ច​របស់​អ្នកស្រី មីស៊្ហែល អូបាម៉ា

US first lady Michelle Obama talks with students at a school in Siem Reap on the weekend during her visit to the Kingdom
US first lady Michelle Obama talks with students at a school in Siem Reap on the weekend during her visit to the Kingdom. ETHAN HARFENIST
Prime Minister Hun Sen took aim at Michelle Obama yesterday, accusing the US first lady of making false promises, while suggesting her visit last weekend was more about hopeful rhetoric rather than implementing concrete improvements in the country’s education sector.
During a speech at the National Institute of Education, Hun Sen told the US Embassy and USAID to make good on alleged scholarship promises and front some actual cash if they want to truly make an impact on education reform in Cambodia. The prime minister was referring to Obama’s visit to the country on Saturday, in which she met with 10 female students in Siem Reap to push the White House’s “Let Girls Learn” initiative.
“Her [Obama’s] mission is very good, but I suggest the United States should help completely and not play like this,” he said. “It is just playing around – it is not good. What if she chose 300 students? It would be death. I don’t have that money to give.”
Hun Sen’s comments came after Education Minister Hang Chuon Naron on Tuesday requested state university scholarships for the 10 girls, whose education through grade 12 is being funded by NGO Room to Read.

Hun Sen said that he provided each student $1,500 per year to go toward their four years at university, but mentioned he was under the impression the US was going to foot the bill for the girls’ education. Now, he said, the Cambodian Ministry of Education was left to pay for them.
“I thought the United States would give scholarships to those students until they complete university, but that’s not [the case],” Hun Sen said. “I had strongly hoped [that was the situation], but she just came here to choose people and then [left] it to the Ministry of Education.”

More casinos on the horizon

A man plays poker at a casino in Preah Sihanouk last year
A man plays poker at a casino in Preah Sihanouk last year. Last year the gaming industry in Cambodia generated more than $25 million. Eddie Morton
Three new casinos are set to open in Cambodia’s southern province of Takeo, aiming to cash in on an influx of Vietnamese gamblers, as the gambling hubs are targeting a mid-April opening, a Ministry of Economy and Finance official said yesterday.
Ros Phearun, deputy director of the ministry’s Finance Industry department, said the casinos will be located along the Vietnamese border in Takeo province’s Kiri Vong district in Phnom Den village. He declined to disclose the name of the owners or capital investment, only saying that they were locally owned.
“By the plan, they want to start operating before Khmer New Year,” he said.
Two of these casinos have completed construction and are awaiting their operating licences, as they haven’t complied with all the requirements, whereas the third one hasn’t begun construction as yet, Phearun said.
“We hope they will come complete the requirement very soon as we already did push them recently,” he added.
The border province of Takeo already has two licensed casinos. While it is illegal for Cambodians to gamble in the Kingdom, Vietnamese gamblers from across the border are known to frequent these casinos.
There are no figures available for the numbers of gamers at border casinos, but Vietnam is the largest source of visitors to Cambodia, with 900,000 Vietnamese coming to the Kingdom in 2014, according to data from the Tourism Ministry.

Arun Rasmey ends run with Funcinpec party

Princess Norodom Arun Rasmey addresses Funcinpec party members
Princess Norodom Arun Rasmey addresses Funcinpec party members during a congress in Phnom Penh earlier this year. Heng Chivoan
Princess Norodom Arun Rasmey has resigned from her position as a deputy president of the royalist Funcinpec party, prompting analysts to question the viability of the party’s attempts at revitalisation under returned leader Prince Norodom Ranariddh.
Funcinpec party spokesman Nhep Bun Chin yesterday confirmed that Arun Rasmey had stepped down, but party officials remained tight-lipped as to the reasons behind the move.
The Princess, who is also Cambodia’s ambassador to Malaysia, could not be reached yesterday. But Bun Chin said she had left Funcinpec to concentrate on her other duties.
“The Princess is very busy. There is nothing strange going on and nobody is upset that she resigned from the position to accompany the King,” he said, referring to Arun Rasmey joining King Norodom Sihamoni in Beijing, where he is undergoing a medical check-up.
Funcinpec held a conference earlier this month where Ranariddh attempted to re-energise the floundering party by offering incentives to members who won converts from other parties. He also appointed four additional vice presidents to work alongside Arun Rasmey and Nhek Bun Chhay.
“She [Arun Rasmey] asked to be allowed to resign many times before, but [Ranariddh] asked her to stay to help,” Bun Chin added.

Prime Minister Announces Hefty Raises for Ruling Party Staffers [So Hun Sen pays CPP staffers with the national budget because had texted the finance minister?]

Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday called on his ruling party to give its staffers a base salary on par with the country’s lowest paid teachers plus 30 percent, roughly matching the raises teachers, nurses, police and soldiers will be seeing this year.
Speaking at a graduation ceremony for teachers in Phnom Penh, Mr. Hun Sen said he told CPP secretary-general Say Chhum via text message to make it happen.
“I texted a message saying that civil servants and armed forces will have their salaries raised in April, so full-time party staff will also get a salary, an increased salary,” he said. “I want to take the lowest [paid] teacher and add 30 percent. A party has to be strengthened in countries where there are many parties.”
He said he forwarded the same text to Finance Minister Aun Porn Moniroth.
Taking aim at the CPP’s main opposition, the prime minister accused the CNRP of taking up the call for a $160 monthly minimum wage for garment workers last year while neglecting its own party staffers.
“They demanded $160 for workers but the staff at their offices are offered only $80,” he said.
In August, Mr. Hun Sen announced a large pay increase for teachers and nurses to take effect in three stages by April. In January, he announced similar raises of 35 percent and up for low-ranking police and soldiers, also to take effect next month.

Cambodia: End Baseless ‘Insurrection’ Trial of Opposition

“The prosecution of the 11 activists is the latest round of Prime Minister Hun Sen’s campaign to intimidate and imprison opponents of his government. Donors should speak out against such proceedings and the growing list of political prisoners in the country.”
Brad Adams, Asia director

Judicial Officer Concedes Charges Are ‘Ridiculous’
MARCH 25, 2015
(New York) – Cambodian authorities should drop trumped-up charges of “insurrection” against 11 opposition party activists, Human Rights Watch said today. A hearing in the trial of the Cambodian National Rescue Party (CNRP) members is scheduled for March 27, 2015, in the Phnom Penh Municipal Court.

A Cambodian judicial officer familiar with the insurrection charges described them to Human Rights Watch as “ridiculous.” Cambodia’s international donors should inform the government that their continued support depends on ending the prosecutions of Cambodians for exercising their fundamental rights to freedom of expression, association, and peaceful assembly.

“The prosecution of the 11 activists is the latest round of Prime Minister Hun Sen’s campaign to intimidate and imprison opponents of his government,” said Brad Adams, Asia director. “Donors should speak out against such proceedings and the growing list of political prisoners in the country.”

Peter Dutton defends Nauru hospitals as better than some in Australia as Cambodia deal takes a step forward

Heath Aston and Sarah Whyte in Phnom Penh

March 26, 2015
The Sydney Morning Herald
Secretary of State spokesman Phay Siphan at the Cambodian government's ministry offices.
Secretary of State spokesman Phay Siphan at the Cambodian government's ministry offices. Photo: Sarah Whyte
Asylum seekers on Nauru receive schooling of the same standard as in Australia and access to hospital facilities that are better than some regional areas, says Immigration Minister Peter Dutton.
But a Cambodian official compared the living conditions of detainees to those of "animals". 
Mr Dutton mounted the defence of Australia's detention facilities as he signed a memorandum of understanding with the Deputy Prime Minister of Cambodia, Sar Kheng, that will clear the way for the resettlement of refugees to that country.
Immigration Minister Peter Dutton gives a present to Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior Sar Kheng, during a signing of a memorandum of understanding.
Immigration Minister Peter Dutton gives a present to Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior Sar Kheng, during a signing of a memorandum of understanding. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen
As the government deals with the fall-out of the Moss review into sexual abuse on Nauru, which exposed evidence of rapes, sexual assault on minors and Nauruan guards trading marijuana for sexual favours, Mr Dutton said the facility was well-resourced.
"I've been to many hospitals in regional Australia, including in towns where people would say that those hospitals aren't up to the standard of those in Nauru. I also had the opportunity, the great privilege, to go to Afghanistan to see our troops and the field hospital that I saw there … was not in my judgement up to the standard that I saw in Nauru," he said.
"I also went to the educational facilities, the classrooms there [in the detention centre in Nauru] where young people at taxpayers' expense are being provided with English classes and schooling otherwise that is of a standard at least as good as in Australia."

Khmerican - Connecting the Cambodian Diaspora

Khmerican - Connecting the Cambodian Diaspora

New America Media / VoiceWaves, News Feature, Kallayan Thuch and Adalhi Montes,Posted: Mar 26, 2015
Editor's Note: As two important Cambodian dates approach, Khmer New Year on April 13 and the Day of Remembrance on May 20, Phatry Derek Pan, founder of Khmerican.com, discusses the importance of connecting Cambodian Americans with their homeland.

LONG BEACH, Calif. Phatry Derek Pan first heard the term “Khmerican” when he returned to Cambodia at the age of 25 to write for the Phnom Pehn Post.

The term was tossed around the newsroom as a catchy way to identify a Cambodian American. When his girlfriend at the time held a photo shoot called, “I am Khmerican,” Pan wrote a profile for the Phnom Pehn Post titled, “Rapper In Search of the Khmerican Dream.”

“This was a completely invented term and I wasn’t sure how the general public would perceive it,” he recalled. “I am happy to see the word evolve and even more eager to see the term interpreted in the decades ahead.”

Nobody knew at the time that the nickname would become the name of the leading online media outlet for Cambodian Americans. Not even Pan himself, the CEO and co-founder of Khmerican.com.

Pan’s then-girlfriend purchased the Khmerican web domain and Pan continued to renew the domain for years, not knowing exactly what he would do with it. It took six years of reporting in Cambodia and returning to the United States for it to hit him.

Cambodia Defends Its Human Rights Record

Cambodia presented its human rights report before the United Nations Office in Geneva amid growing allegations that abuses are being systematically committed by state forces. The UN committee acknowledged that Cambodia has introduced some reforms in recent years, in particular land reform and registration of indigenous communal lands. But it also expressed dissatisfaction with the answers given by the Cambodian representatives, especially over the issue of impunity and extrajudicial killings.
The Cambodian government was represented by Ney Samol, Permanent Representative of Cambodia to the UN Office at Geneva, and Mak Sambath, president of the National Human Rights Committee of Cambodia.
The committee tackled several issues that seek to probe the role of the Cambodian government in addressing the rising number of human rights violations across the country in the past two decades.
One panel member asked why the police seemed hesitant to aggressively pursue investigations involving trafficking cases. Related to women’s issues, another panel expert expressed concern about the plight of women workers in the garment sector. The panel also cited a report published by Cambodia’s Minister of Women’s Affairs in 2012 and 2013 which mentioned that 35 percent of men had used some form of physical violence against women. It confirmed news reports of increasing incidences of domestic violence, rape, and acid attacks.

[Long Beach's] Cambodian Culture to Be Spotlighted in Parade and Festival

byBRITTANY WOOLSEY , The Long Beach Post
Cambodian culture will be highlighted in Long Beach next month when The Cambodian Coordinating Council and Councilmember Dee Andrews hosts its ninth annual Cambodian New Year Parade and Festival.
The event, slated for April 12, aims to feature Cambodian culture and spotlight Cambodia Town and its businesses.
The program begins at 9:30AM with an interfaith program on Anaheim Street and Junipero Avenue. The parade procession will follow from 10:00AM to noon, starting from Anaheim Street and Junipero Avenue to Warren Avenue.
After the parade, the Cambodian Town Culture Festival, with entertainment, authentic Cambodian food and cultural vendors, will begin at noon on the main stage at MacArthur Park, located at 1321 East Anaheim Street.
For more information about the parade and festival, click here.

Thai-Cambodian border trade cooperation to be enhanced

Thursday, 26 March 2015 By  NNT
BANGKOK, 26 March 2015 - The Thai and Cambodian Ministries of Commerce have agreed to join forces in driving cooperation in border trade further, aiming to achieve trade growth of 30 percent in five years.
Deputy Commerce Minister of Thailand Apiradee Tantraporn revealed after meeting with her Cambodian counterpart Kem Sithan that the two sides have concurred to further expand their trade cooperation at all levels after last year’s total trade value exceeded 5 billion US dollars. Emphasis will be placed on trade along the shared border which is believed to have the potential to meet the target growth of 30 percent by the year 2020.
The two neighbors also agreed to the joint development of special economic zones, hoping to attract more trade and investment to their countries. Cambodia was reportedly supportive of Thailand’s suggestions for the trade strategy, which will be discussed at the 5th Thai-Cambodian Joint Trade Committee (JTC) Meeting to be hosted by Thailand this year.

ADB Expects Cambodian Economy to Pick Up

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is predicting a steady uptick in Cambodia’s economic growth to 7.3 percent and 7.5 percent in 2015 and 2016, respectively, on the strength of improved performance in the country’s trade partners and a tempered political environment at home.
The forecast is part of the Asian Development Outlook 2015, which the bank launched Tuesday and shows Cambodia continuing to outpace most of Asia and recovering from a slight dip to 7 percent growth in its gross domestic product (GDP) in 2014.
Laborers work at a construction site in Phnom Penh on Tuesday. (Pring Samrang/Reuters)
Laborers work at a construction site in Phnom Penh on Tuesday. (Pring Samrang/Reuters)
The ADB blames last year’s dip —down from an average growth rate of 7.2 percent over the previous three years—on political and labor unrest that dented both investor confidence and tourist arrivals, and on floods and droughts curbing agriculture.
At a press conference in Phnom Penh on Tuesday, ADB senior country economist Jan Hansen said Cambodia’s economy was set to speed up again thanks to last year’s political detente, appeased garment workers and a recovering global economy.
“These headwinds for the economy have eased, or started to ease,” Mr. Hansen said. “We are…expecting an increasingly positive performance by the major trading partners, by the U.S, by Thailand, and to a lesser extent by the European Union, but also because of the [easing of] political and labor tensions, the lower fuel costs…which are increasing real disposable income for households.”
The ADB says Cambodia will also benefit this year and next from robust domestic demand, a shrinking fiscal deficit, replenishing bank deposits and an improving—if still deeply negative—trade deficit. The bank also expects agricultural output to pick up modestly.

UN in Montagnard talks

Two ethnic Montagnard men sit next to a camp kitchen in a forest in Ratanakkiri province last year after fleeing across the boarder to avoid persecution in Vietnam. ADHOC

The United Nations’ refugee agency met this week with representatives of the Cambodian and Vietnamese governments to “discuss solutions” to the recent influx of Montagnard asylum seekers, with repatriation touted as a possible answer, the Post has learned.
Vivian Tan, regional spokeswoman for the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), said the meeting, which took place on Monday, was aimed at finding a resolution “in line with international standards and agreeable to all parties”.
Since October, dozens of Christian Montagnards – an indigenous group from Vietnam’s Central Highlands – have fled to Cambodia citing religious persecution.
Their arrival has been met with varying responses. Thirteen have so far been granted refugee status, 10 others are seeking to process their asylum claims in Phnom Penh, 13 remain in hiding in the forests of Ratanakkiri province, and – in direct violation of the 1951 Refugee Convention – dozens more have been deported back to Vietnam without due process.
According to those sent back, their deportations were the result of coordinated efforts by Vietnamese and Cambodian authorities. While Tan said that no conclusions had been reached from the talks, she acknowledged that voluntary repatriation had been proposed.
In 2002, Cambodia, Vietnam and UNHCR reached a trilateral voluntary repatriation agreement after UN officials were promised access to the Central Highlands. Three years later, a tripartite Memorandum of Understanding was signed to repatriate refugees under controlled conditions.
The 2005 agreement came under fire from rights groups and observers, who said it authorised the forced repatriation of recognised refugees who refused resettlement abroad, and had insufficient provisions for monitoring and protecting returnees.

Kem Sokha arrived home to a hero's welcome 25th March 2015

SR: ២៥ មីនា ២០១៥ / 25 March 2015, 23:00

លោក កឹម សុខា បានមកដល់អាកាសយានដ្ឋានអន្តរជាតិភ្នំពេញ នៅម៉ោង ១១ យប់នេះ។

Hun Sen takes aim at Michelle Obama

Michelle Obama waves during her visit to Angkor Wat in Cambodia's Siem Reap province on Saturday. Photo by Ethan Harfenist.

Prime Minister Hun Sen took aim at Michelle Obama on Wednesday, accusing the United States first lady of making false promises while suggesting her visit last weekend was more about hopeful rhetoric rather than concrete implementations of improvements in the country’s education sector.
During a speech at the National Institute of Education, Hun Sen told the US Embassy and USAID to make good on their alleged scholarship promises and front some actual cash if they want to truly make an impact on education reform in Cambodia. The prime minister was referring to Obama’s visit to the country on Saturday, in which she met with 10 female students in Siem Reap to push the White House’s Let Girls Learn initiative.
"Her [Obama's] mission is very good, but I suggest the United States should help completely and not play like this,” he said. “It is just playing around -- it is not good. What if she chooses 300 students? It would be death. I don't have that money to give."

Prominent S'ville Russian arrested

Police arrive at Snake House to arrest Nikolai Doroshenko on Wednesday. Photo supplied.

Businessman Nikolai Doroshenko, the longtime adversary of fugitive former billionaire Sergei Polonsky, has been arrested in Sihanoukville on charges of counterfeiting documents, forgery of signatures and breach of trust.
Military Police surrounded Doroshenko's Snake House restaurant on Wednesday afternoon and whisked him away in a black car, to the apparent delight of Polonsky, who tweeted photos of the arrest, signing off with "have a nice day".
Kol Phally, deputy police commissioner, told the Post that Doroshenko was arrested at about 2:30pm by police serving a warrant.
“They arrested only him alone,” he said, adding that he expected military police to forward him to the court.
A copy of the arrest warrant indicates the charges are related to a complaint Polonsky filed against Doroshenko in July 2014 alleging he forged signatures to take possession of the disputed Koh Dek Koul island.
Preah Sihanouk provincial governor Chhit Sokhon confirmed earlier that police were seeking Doroshenko's arrest, but stressed "we didn't have any relation to or pressure from Polonsky for this arrest".
"We arrested him with many cases related to violent provocation and business competition," he said, adding that any further details of the case were being kept secret at this stage.
The arrest warrant viewed by the Post states that Doroshenko was summonsed to appear in court twice in February but failed to appear.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Tribunal's treatment of cases 003, 004 draws int’l scorn

In this photo released by the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia, Judges and clerks of the U.N.-backed war crimes tribunal are standing inside the court hall of the U.N.-backed war crimes tribunal in Phnom Penh, file photo.

"The group called the ECCC’s unwillingness to address or fully acknowledge the interference “even more appalling” than the government’s attempts to block the cases."

A justice group has slammed the UN-backed Khmer Rouge tribunal for “turning a blind eye” to government interference and failing to disclose details surrounding authorities’ refusal to arrest Case 003 and 004 suspects Meas Muth and Im Chaem.
The criticism by the Open Society Justice Initiative (OSJI) yesterday came as Human Rights Watch called on the international community to cut the court’s funding unless Cambodian authorities cooperate with the cases against the former senior Khmer Rouge officials. The pair are charged with, among other things, crimes against humanity including murder, enslavement and extermination in relation to purges and Khmer Rouge security centres.
In separate statements, both groups called the failure of the Cambodian judicial police to arrest the suspects a “mockery”.
The pair was charged in absentia by international co-investigating judge Mark Harmon on March 3, who acted without the support of his national counterpart You Bunleng and in the face of strong government opposition.
At the time, Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia communications officer Lars Olsen said the duo was charged in absentia because “it has not been possible, within a reasonable time, to get any arrest warrants executed”.
Yesterday, Olsen refused to confirm whether arrest warrants had been issued, citing confidentiality. Declining to comment on the criticisms, he referred questions about why warrants weren’t executed to the judicial police, whose director general, Mao Chandara, declined to comment.
Muth’s lawyer, Ang Udom, confirmed his team was preparing an appeal against an arrest warrant.

The National Assembly's Human Rights Commission visits the location of the land dispute in Sihanoukville គណៈកម្មការសិទ្ធិមនុស្ស ទទួលពាក្យបណ្តឹង អង្កេតបញ្ហាដីធ្លីនៅ ខេត្តព្រះសីហនុ

២៤ មិនា ២០១៥ / 24 March 2015ប្រតិភូគណៈកម្មការសិទ្ធិមនុស្ស ទទួលពាក្យបណ្តឹង អង្កេត និងទំនាក់ទំនងរដ្ឋសភា ព្រឹទ្ធសភា ដែលជា...
Posted by Sam Rainsy on Monday, March 23, 2015

Analysis: Why the opposition agreed to support the election law that the ruling CPP wanted? បទ​វិភាគ៖ ហេតុ​អ្វី​បក្ស​ប្រឆាំង​ព្រម​ធ្វើ​ច្បាប់​បោះ​ឆ្នោត​ថ្មី​ស្រប​តាម​បក្ស​ប្រជាជន?

ប្រជុំ​សភា ៦២០
តំណាងរាស្ត្រ​គណបក្ស​សង្គ្រោះ​ជាតិ និង​គណបក្ស​ប្រជាជន​កម្ពុជា លើក​ដៃ​អនុម័ត​ច្បាប់​បោះ​ឆ្នោត​ថ្មី កាល​ពី​ថ្ងៃ​ទី​១៩ មីនា ២០១៥ នា​វិមាន​រដ្ឋ​សភា។
RFA/Tin Zakariya
ការ​ធ្វើ​កំណែ​ទម្រង់​ការ​បោះឆ្នោត​នៅ​ក្រោយ​វិបត្តិ​ជាប់​គាំង​នយោបាយ​ក្រោយ​ការ​បោះឆ្នោត​សាកល​ថ្ងៃ​ទី​២៨ កក្កដា ឆ្នាំ​២០១៣ នោះ គឺ​ជា​ផែនការ​ចំពោះ​មុខ​ដែល​គណបក្ស​ជាប់​ឆ្នោត​ទាំង​ពីរ​បាន​ចាប់​ដៃ​គ្នា​ធ្វើ​សេចក្ដី​ព្រាង​ច្បាប់​បោះ​ឆ្នោត​ថ្មី នៅ​បន្ទាប់​ពី​មាន​កិច្ច​ព្រមព្រៀង​បញ្ចប់​ជម្លោះ​នយោបាយ​រវាង​គណបក្ស​ជាប់​ឆ្នោត​ទាំង​ពីរ។
ការ​ធ្វើ​សេចក្ដី​ព្រាង​ច្បាប់​កំណែ​ទម្រង់​ការ​បោះ​ឆ្នោត​នេះ ទោះបីជា​គណបក្ស​ជាប់​ឆ្នោត​ទាំង​ពីរ​មាន​ទិស​ដៅ​រួម​មួយ គឺ​ធ្វើ​យ៉ាង​ណា​ឲ្យ​សេចក្ដី​ព្រាង​ច្បាប់​បោះ​ឆ្នោត និង​ច្បាប់​រៀបចំ​គណៈកម្មាធិការ​ជាតិ​រៀបចំ​ការ​បោះឆ្នោត​ល្អ​ប្រសើរ​ឡើង និង​ជៀសវាង​ការ​ជាប់​គាំង​នយោបាយ​នៅ​ក្រោយ​បោះឆ្នោត តែ​ការ​ធ្វើ​ច្បាប់​ថ្មី​នេះ គណបក្ស​ទាំង​ពីរ​មាន​វិធីសាស្ត្រ​រៀងៗ​ខ្លួន ដើម្បី​ទាញ​យក​ផលប្រយោជន៍​​បក្ស​ខ្លួន។ តែ​យ៉ាង​នេះ​ក្ដី ឃើញ​ថា គណបក្ស​ប្រជាជន​កម្ពុជា ហាក់​មាន​ប្រៀប​ជាង​គណបក្ស​សង្គ្រោះ​ជាតិ ពិសេស​គឺ​តុលាការ​បាន​ចាប់​សកម្មជន​គណបក្ស​ប្រឆាំង​ជា​បន្តបន្ទាប់​នៅ​ខណៈ​បក្ស​ទាំង​ពីរ​ធ្វើ​ច្បាប់​នេះ។
តើ​ការ​ចាប់​ខ្លួន​សកម្មជន​គណបក្ស​សង្គ្រោះ​ជាតិ ជា​ការ​គាបសង្កត់​គណបក្ស​ប្រឆាំង​ឲ្យ​សម្រប​តាម​គណបក្ស​កាន់​អំណាច​ក្នុង​ការ​ធ្វើ​ច្បាប់​នេះ ឬ​យ៉ាង​ណា?
​សេចក្ដី​ព្រាង​សេចក្ដី​ស្នើ​ច្បាប់​ចំនួន​ពីរ​ដ៏​ចម្រូងចម្រាស​ដែល​គណបក្ស​ទាំង​ពីរ​បាន​ធ្វើ​ឡើង​តាម​កិច្ចព្រមព្រៀង​នយោបាយ​នោះ ត្រូវ​បាន​សភា​បាន​អនុម័ត​យ៉ាង​ប្រញាប់ប្រញាល់​រួច​រាល់​ដូច​ការ​គ្រោង​ទុក។
សេចក្ដី​ស្នើ​ច្បាប់​ស្ដីពី​ការ​រៀបចំ និង​ការ​ប្រព្រឹត្ត​ទៅ​នៃ​គណៈកម្មាធិការ​ជាតិ​រៀបចំ​ការ​បោះ​ឆ្នោត និង​សេចក្ដី​ស្នើ​ច្បាប់​ស្ដីពី​ការ​បោះ​ឆ្នោត​ជ្រើសតាំង​តំណាងរាស្ត្រ។ ច្បាប់​ទាំង​ពីរ​នេះ ត្រូវ​បាន​ក្រុម​ការងារ​គណបក្ស​ជាប់​ឆ្នោត​ទាំង​ពីរ​បាន​រៀបចំ​ធ្វើ​នៅ​ក្រោយ​ពេល​មាន​កិច្ច​ព្រមព្រៀង​ដំណោះស្រាយ​នយោបាយ​កាល​ពី​ថ្ងៃ​ទី​២២ កក្កដា ឆ្នាំ​២០១៤។
ការ​ធ្វើ​កំណែ​ទម្រង់​ការ​បោះ​ឆ្នោត​នេះ ត្រូវ​បាន​ប្រជាពលរដ្ឋ អង្គការ​សង្គម​ស៊ីវិល សំដែង​ការ​គាំទ្រ និង​សប្បាយ​ចិត្ត ព្រោះ​មិន​ចង់​ឲ្យ​មាន​ការ​ជាប់​គាំង​នយោបាយ​នៅ​ក្រោយ​ពេល​បោះឆ្នោត ឬ​មាន​ការ​បង្ហូរ​ឈាម​គ្នា​រវាង​ខ្មែរ​និង​ខ្មែរ ក្នុង​ពេល​ធ្វើ​បាតុកម្ម​ប្រឆាំង​លទ្ធផល​បោះឆ្នោត​ទៀត​ឡើយ។ ក៏​ប៉ុន្តែ​ក្ដី​សង្ឃឹម​របស់​ប្រជាពលរដ្ឋ ពិសេស​ក្រុម​អង្គការ​ធ្វើ​ការ​ទាក់ទង​នឹង​ការ​ឃ្លាំមើល​ការ​បោះ​ឆ្នោត សំដែង​ពី​ការ​ខក​ចិត្ត​ទៅ​វិញ នៅ​ពេល​ច្បាប់​ថ្មី​ទាំង​ពីរ​ត្រូវ​បាន​សភា​អនុម័ត​កាលពី​ថ្ងៃ​ទី​១៩ មីនា នោះ។