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Matt Surrusco


Minority Parties ‘Spoil’ Vote in 130 Communes

If just seven of the 151 ballots cast for the Grassroots Democracy Party in Taing Yab commune had gone for the CNRP, another commune would have slid into the main opposition’s win column. Instead, the ruling CPP won the commune by six votes.

Youth a Third of Voters, but Young Candidates Remain Rare

Young people make up about a third of the country’s approximately 7.9 million registered voters. But the parties with the most candidates in Sunday’s commune elections, the ruling CPP and main opposition CNRP, have the smallest percentage of young contenders—under 8 percent each.

Man Dies After Detention Without HIV Medication, Methadone

A recovering drug user with HIV died 10 days after he walked out of Prey Speu detention center in Phnom Penh, a death an NGO worker attributed to his being denied access to medication and methadone treatment while he was locked up for more than a month.

Despite Relief Ruling, Cambodian Still Faces US Deportation

A Cambodian man slated to be deported from the U.S. in March before being granted an emergency stay of removal continues to face deportation to Cambodia, even after a judge recently decided to halt his repatriation, his sister said this week.

Election Rules for Media Called a Threat and a ‘Reminder’

Officials yesterday said government-issued media guidelines for election coverage which prohibit the publication of news that affects the country’s “social stability” were just a “reminder” of existing laws, but some NGOs said the issuing of the code of conduct was an act meant to “stifle dissent.”

Foreign Homeland

Cambodians deported from the US are being sent to a country where many have never lived, leading them to examine their concept of home and self-identity

Seven More Cambodians Deported From US Arrive in Phnom Penh

Seven more Cambodians deported from the U.S. arrived in Phnom Penh on Wednesday, despite the government making another request earlier this month to put deportations on hold until the two countries renegotiate their repatriation agreement.

Hun Sen Scolds Media During Forum Session

Prime Minister Hun Sen used a news conference at Thursday’s World Economic Forum on Asean in Phnom Penh to warn that two foreign-owned news outlets, including The Cambodia Daily, were “against” the government and that journalists who did not report “properly” would be seen as “servants of foreigners.”

Shifting Economy Feeds Nation’s Uncertain Politics

The country is set to embark on local elections that promise to highlight the economic hardships faced by many Cambodians despite a sustained annual growth rate and continued poverty reduction, economic and political observers said this week.

Government Denounces US, EU Criticism of Adhoc 5 Detention

The government has lashed out at the U.S. and E.U. over their criticism of the detention of five current and former rights workers in Cambodia for more than a year, adopting the language of its critics by calling their statements “politically motivated.”

Judge Nixes NGO Visit to Jailed Rights Workers

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Thursday denied rights organization Licadho’s request to visit four rights workers, an election official and prominent land rights activist Tep Vanny in prison today, without providing a reason, a Licadho officer said.

Eight More US Deportees Arrive in Cambodia

Eight more Cambodians repatriated from the U.S. touched down in Phnom Penh on Wednesday, some of whom will be standing on Cambodian soil for the first time in their lives and have no known family in the country.

Court Issues Arrest Warrant for Runaway RFA Journalist

On the eve of World Press Freedom Day, the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Tuesday issued an arrest warrant for a Radio Free Asia (RFA) journalist after he skipped a court summons related to a prison visit he made with opposition politicians.

Journalist, Now in US, Will Not Appear in Court, RFA Says

A Radio Free Asia (RFA)journalist summoned to appear in court today over accusations that he falsely identified himself during a prison visit last month has traveled to Washington and will not return to Cambodia, RFA said on Monday.

New Father Could Face Deportation From US Within Days

A Cambodian man scheduled to be deported from the U.S. this week is a new father who may not get the chance to meet his first child or say goodbye to his wife in person before being sent to a country he has never seen.

Six More Months

Politically motivated. Arbitrary. An affront to human rights. The yearlong detention without trial of the Adhoc 5—a moniker given to four rights workers and an election official caught up in an opposition leader’s alleged affair—has been called all of these things. Today, a judge is expected to lengthen the detention by another six months, purportedly to continue the investigation against the five, even though, in the past six months of the ongoing probe, Adhoc says only one witness has been called.

Rights NGOs ‘Temporarily’ Banned From Visiting Jailed Adhoc Staff

Three human rights NGOs on Tuesday said they were “temporarily” blocked this month from visiting imprisoned staff members of rights group Adhoc and an election official who have been jailed for nearly a year without trial.

Eight More Cambodians Deported From US; More Expected in May

Eight more Cambodians living in the U.S. have been deported to Cambodia under a 2002 repatriation agreement and arrived in Phnom Penh on Thursday, with more expected early next month, a U.S. Embassy spokesman and an NGO said.

Dutch Alleged Child Abuser Was Clergyman

A Dutchman arrested this week in Siem Reap province in possession of nearly 1,300 photographs of naked boys was charged with child pornography on Thursday—and identified as a former member of the Catholic clergy in his country, a court official and sources in the Netherlands said.

Dutchman Paid 19 Boys to Take Their Naked Photographs, Police Say

Siem Reap provincial police officers on Wednesday interviewed 12 underage boys who say a Dutchman paid them a few dollars each to pose for nude photographs, after seven other boys claimed the same on Tuesday, a police official said.