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Alex Consiglio


NGO Blasts Roundup of Phnom Penh’s Beggars

An NGO partnered with Phnom Penh’s municipal government in a scheme to help poor children get off the street Wednesday blasted the city’s ongoing catch-and-release strategy.

Partner NGOs Again in the Dark Over City’s Street Sweep

Rin Ren thought that her grandchildren had gone to study English with NGO Mith Samlanh and would return to their home along the railroad in Phnom Penh’s Boeng Kak II commune by nightfall, just as they had done many times before.

Some Plan to Cheat While Others Count On Blessings

Education Minister Hang Chuon Naron has touted Monday’s grade 12 national exam as a chance to restore confidence in the education system. But even though the government has ramped up efforts to clean up the cheat-ridden exam, some say they still plan to flout the rules.

Recruitment Agencies Operate Without Oversight

In June, after about a quarter million migrant workers returned from their jobs in Thailand fearing the military junta’s crackdown on illegal labor, Cambodia’s government announced it had slashed the cost of emigration, and would charge workers only $49 to legally return to work across the border.

Deceived Migrant Worker is Left Scrambling for a Refund

Nang Kumnour, a 25-year-old migrant worker who tried to enter Thailand last week, is too embarrassed to return home.

Beaten Commune Security Guard Still Confused and Recovering

While the Daun Penh district security guards have established a reputation this year for their brutal attacks on protesters, the security force assembled for the July 15 protest was also composed of less seasoned guards from other precincts, according to Daun Penh district governor Kuoch Chamroeun.

Amid Global Applause for Pact, a Sense of Betrayal

As the international community on Wednesday lauded the opposition CNRP’s agreement with the ruling CPP to take its seats in the National Assembly, some of the opposition’s most outspoken allies talked of treachery from a party that months ago was demanding a re-election or the resignation of Prime Minister Hun Sen.

Workers Still Willing to Risk Illegal Thai Crossing

Despite a government strategy to help migrant workers return to Thailand legally after nearly 250,000 workers flooded back to Cambodia last month amid rumors of a crackdown, thousands are again crossing the border illegally.

As Fish Stocks Vanish, Locals Flout Law to Survive

Khan Thea, a subsistence fisherman who lives and works along this sprawling, 7,000-hectare lake fed by the Mekong River, was not having a good day on the water. Struggling to net even a single fish, he finally resorted to a dangerous—and illegal—technique: fishing with electric current.

Fear in Wetlands Where Police Chief Vanished

After a weeklong search by hundreds of villagers in the area turned up nothing, people here have mostly given up believing that the commune police chief, Chan Sophal, 48, will ever be found. His wife, Mout Sinuon, held a funeral for her husband last week.

Flouting Orders, Police Use Condoms as Evidence

According to the government, condoms cannot be used in court as evidence of an illegal sexual transaction, as it may discourage their use and contribute to the spread of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. But some among the country’s police force and prosecutors don’t seem to care.

Chief Monk Defrocked for Drinking, Driving, Impersonating Police

The chief monk of Tuol Krasaing pagoda was defrocked on Wednesday after crashing his sport utility vehicle while drinking and driving and wearing a military police uniform, according to police.

Free Training Little Solace for Workers Back From Thailand

Chhe Noy, a migrant worker who arrived back in her village in Kompong Cham province from Thailand this week, can’t stop stroking her 8-year-old daughter’s hair. Every few minutes, she plants a kiss on the girl’s cheek.

Questions Over Police Inaction in Hit and Run

The military on Thursday identified the soldier who killed a man and seriously injured another in a hit and run last week, but police said they will only pursue criminal charges if the victim’s family files a complaint.

Shops Unfazed By Annual Bootleg DVD Crush

The Ministry of Culture steamrolled 300,000 bootlegged DVDs Monday in its annual celebration of efforts to stamp out piracy.

Convicts Emerge From Prison With Activist Zeal

Pang Vanny says that before this year, he never thought of joining protests or fighting for labor rights. Five months in prison changed that.

Company Digs Trench Around Family’s Home

Hang Chantha watched in horror last weekend as a private company battling to take her land dug a four-meter-deep trench around the perimeter of her home.

After Two Men Die in Hit and Run, a Passive Police Response

Phnom Penh’s police force has had almost a week to investigate a fatal hit-and-run on Friday night, when a Range Rover slammed into a motorbike near the Ministry of Commerce, killing two men and seriously injuring another.

Malaria Center on the Move in Yet Another Land Swap Deal

The National Center for Parasitology, Entomology and Malaria Control is moving from its prime location on Monivong Boulevard to a mostly deserted street on the outskirts of Phnom Penh in yet another swap of state land with a private firm, company officials confirmed Wednesday.

Caltex Workers End Strike After Agreeing to $20 Pay Increase

Hundreds of Caltex workers across Phnom Penh will resume work Thursday after an agreement was reached with U.S. oil giant Chevron on Wednesday to increase their monthly salaries by $20, a union official said.