. សេរីភាពបញ្ចេញមតិគឺជាលក្ខណៈគ្រិៈនៃសិទ្ធិ We should live without fear( សូមបងប្អូនជាជាតិខ្មែរ សូមចូលរួមបោះឆ្នោតជ្រើសរើសមេឃុំ/សង្កាត់ នៅថ្ងៃទី ០៤ ខែ មិថុនា ឆ្នាំ២០១៧ អោយបានគ្រប់ៗគ្នា."

ព៍ត៌មានទាន់ហេតុការណ៍ៈ បាតុកម្មនៅមុខ សាលាក្រុងប៉ោយប៉ែតមានជ័យ ថ្ងៃទី ៣០ ខែ ឧសភា ឆ្នាំ២០១៧

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

ADHOC Provincial Coordinator Threatened with Charges of Defamation Following Intervention in Gender-Based Violence Case

ADHOC Provincial Coordinator Threatened with Charges of Defamation Following Intervention in Gender-Based Violence Case
Phnom Penh, 13 February 2012 ― The Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association (ADHOC) is deeply concerned about potential defamation charges being brought against Soum Chankea, its Provincial Coordinator in Banteay Meanchey province. On 9 February 2012, Soum Chankea was summoned by Yin Sokuntheavy, Sisophon Sub-Prosecutor, following a complaint lodged by Oum Socheath, a CMAC (Cambodia Mine Action Centre) officer working in Banteay Meanchey province.
The questioning will take place on 20 February 2012. The Prosecutor will then decide whether charges are officially brought against Soum Chankea. These include “slanderous denunciation,” an offense punishable by 1 month to 1 year in prison and a 100,000 to 2 million riels fine (article 311 of the Penal Code).Oum Socheath accuses Soum Chankea of defamation following ADHOC’s intervention in a gender-based violence case. The victim, a 25-year old woman working as a waitress at Steng Sen restaurant, filed complaints against Oum Socheath and another man known as Mr. Veth, on 4 and 9 November respectively. She accuses them of sexual harassment and of sexually molesting her on two occasions, on 3 and 8 November 2011. The first time, she alleges a group of men, led by Oum Socheath, forced her to drink and then touched her breasts, forced her to kiss them, and asked her to have sex with them. She sought help from ADHOC and lodged a complaint on 4 November.
On 7 November, the perpetrators came back and threatened her, declaring they were not afraid because they were protected by high-ranking people. On 8 November, according to the victim, they committed the same acts, this time under the leadership of Mr. Veth, a close friend of Oum Socheath. She escaped, filed a complaint with the provincial Police Commission, and sought help from journalists and ADHOC.
Following the victim’s complaints, the authorities took no action to investigate allegations of sexual assault and sexual harassment, which are criminal offenses pursuant to the Cambodian Penal Code. Instead, ADHOC Provincial Coordinator Soum Chankea, who had urged them to investigate the case, now faces criminal charges following his intervention with the police and the Prosecutor.
Criminal charges are increasingly being brought against Human Rights Defenders, notably those involved in the protection of women and children’s rights in Cambodia. Following cases in Rattanakiri and Kampong Chhnang, it is the third time ADHOC staff have been threatened with charges of defamation or incitement.
Instead of investigating allegations of human rights violations, Cambodian authorities continue to place undue restrictions on the activities of Human Rights Defenders through the expansive use of criminal charges. Moreover, arrests of Human Rights Defenders are often carried out, and charges brought against them, on the basis of doubtful evidence or one-sided allegations by powerful individuals, for Cambodian courts do not act independently.
For more information, please contact Mr. Ny Chakrya, Head of Monitoring Section at ADHOC: 011 274 959

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