Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - France, US condemn calls to shutter CCHR

France, US condemn calls to shutter CCHR

Traffic passes in front of the Cambodian Center for Human Rights’ headquarters on Monday in Phnom Penh.
Traffic passes in front of the Cambodian Center for Human Rights’ headquarters on Monday in Phnom Penh. Pha Lina

France, US condemn calls to shutter CCHR

The French and American embassies yesterday condemned Prime Minister Hun Sen’s call for the closure of prominent NGO Cambodian Center for Human Rights over its purported links to “foreigners”.

According to a press release, the director for Asia and Oceania at the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs, Thierry Mathou, visited Cambodia on Monday and yesterday to meet representatives of the government, opposition, and civil society.

“The Director urged the Cambodian government to once again become part of a democratic process and to allow the opposition, media and civil society to function without hindrance,” the press release reads. “He emphasized that the closing of the human rights NGO Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR), if it came to be, would be considered a particularly negative new development.”

Meanwhile, US Embassy spokesman David Josar said the US was “very concerned” at the calls to shutter CCHR. “This is part of a disturbing trend in Cambodia that has included limiting space for civil society, closing independent media outlets, and dissolving the main opposition party outright.”

Prak Sam Oeun, of the Ministry of Interior’s General Administration Department, would only say investigations into CCHR were ongoing. CCHR Executive Director Chak Sopheap yesterday said they had not yet heard from the Interior Ministry.

Additional reporting by Niem Chheng

MOST VIEWED

  • Ice cream, noodles flagged over carcinogen

    The General Department of Customs and Excise of Cambodia (GDCE) has identified three types of instant noodles and ice cream trademarks originating from Thailand, Vietnam and France that are suspected to contain ethylene oxide, which poses a cancer risk to consumers. The general department has

  • Exclusive interview with Josep Borrell Fontelles, High Representative of the EU

    CAMBODIA is hosting the 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and Related Meetings this week with top officials from the US, China, and Russia and other countries in the region slated to attend and to meet with face-to-face with their counterparts on the sidelines. In

  • Angkor lifetime pass, special Siem Reap travel offers planned

    The Ministry of Tourism plans to introduce a convenient, single lifetime pass for foreign travellers to visit Angkor Archaeological Park and potentially other areas. The move is designed to stimulate tourism to the culturally rich province of Siem Reap as the start of the “Visit

  • Rise in Thai air routes to Siem Reap fuels travel hopes

    Local tourism industry players are eager for regional airline Bangkok Airways Pcl’s resumption of direct flight services between the Thai capital and Siem Reap town on August 1 – home of Cambodia’s awe-inspiring Angkor Archaeological Park – which is expected to boost the growth rate of

  • ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ meet commences, Taiwan issue possibly on table

    The 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and related meetings hosted by Cambodia kicks off in Phnom Penh on August 3, with progress, challenges, and the way forward for the ASEAN Community-building on the table. Issues on Taiwan, sparked by the visit of US House Speaker

  • Recap of this year’s ASEAN FM meet and look ahead

    This year’s edition of the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) hosted by Cambodia comes against the backdrop of heightened global tensions and increasing rivalry between major powers that have been compared to the animosity of the Cold War era. The following is The Post’