Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Farmer activist case probed

Farmer activist case probed

Coalition of Cambodian Farmer Community (CCFC) director Theng Savoeun (centre) pleads for clemency.
Coalition of Cambodian Farmer Community (CCFC) director Theng Savoeun (centre) pleads for clemency. Ratanakkiri Provincial Court spokesman Keo Pisoth has confirmed that the court is exploring various legal avenues in light of Savoeun’s confession. PHOTO SUPPLIED

Farmer activist case probed

The Ratanakkiri Provincial Court is investigating the case against Theng Savoeun, director of the Coalition of Cambodian Farmer Community (CCFC), who has admitted to wrongdoing including “causing unrest” and “undermining public order”.

Court spokesman Keo Pisoth confirmed that the court is exploring various legal avenues in light of Savoeun’s confession.

Pisoth said the court is considering different legal conditions that differ from cases where individuals escape responsibility or refuse to acknowledge their misdeeds. The court, he added, aims to ensure a fair and just process.

In his confession letter dated May 27, Savoeun acknowledged his transgressions, admitting that he had been influenced by foreign actors and opposition politicians. He confessed to orchestrating activities aimed at causing unrest and undermining public order, with the “unintended” consequence of destabilising the government.

Promising not to engage in any further unlawful activities, Savoeun said he will refrain from political activities or efforts to “overthrow the government”. The confession letter emphasised his willingness to abide by the Ministry of Interior’s statutes, the Law on Associations and Non-Governmental Organisation (LANGO) and other relevant legal provisions.

On May 17, at the request of Ratanakkiri police, authorities in neighbouring Kratie province apprehended Savoeun and 16 other CCFC members while they were en route to Phnom Penh, along with their mobile phones and 17 laptops. The next day, 14 individuals were released and had their electronic devices returned, while Savoeun, Pheap and Hach were taken to the Ratanakkiri police station for further questioning.

Deputy provincial police chief Oem Phany clarified that the arrests were made after scrutinising their statements during a press briefing held in Banlung town on May 14-15. The investigation revealed their attempt to incite farmers against government officials.


  • Joy as Koh Ker Temple registered by UNESCO

    Cambodia's Koh Ker Temple archaeological site has been officially added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List, during the 45th session of the World Heritage Committee held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on September 17. The ancient temple, also known as Lingapura or Chok Gargyar, is located in

  • Famed US collector family return artefacts to Cambodia

    In the latest repatriation of ancient artefacts from the US, a total of 33 pieces of Khmer cultural heritage will soon return home, according to the Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts. In a September 12 press statement, it said the US Attorney’s Office for the

  • Tina rebuffs ‘false claims’ over falling paddy price

    Agriculture minister Dith Tina has shed light on the trade of paddy rice in Battambang – Cambodia’s leading rice-producing province – in a bid to curb what he dubs a “social media fact distortion campaign” to destabilise the market. While acknowledging that the prices of paddy

  • Cambodia set to celebrate Koh Ker UNESCO listing

    To celebrate the inscription of the Koh Ker archaeological site on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, the Ministry of Cults and Religion has appealed to pagodas and places of worship to celebrate the achievement by ringing bells, shaking rattles and banging gongs on September 20. Venerable

  • Kampot curfew imposed to curb ‘gang’ violence

    Kampot provincial police have announced measures to contain a recent spike in antisocial behaviour by “unruly’ youth. Officials say the province has been plagued by recent violence among so-called “gang members”, who often fight with weapons such as knives and machetes. Several social observers have

  • PM outlines plans to discuss trade, policy during US visit

    Prime Minister Hun Manet is set to meet with senior US officials and business leaders during his upcoming visit to the US for the UN General Assembly (UNGA), scheduled for September 20. While addressing nearly 20,000 workers in Kampong Speu province, Manet said he aims to affirm