(English) Boeng Kak’s Petition to Demand Releases of Human Rights Defenders

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On 10th January 2017 shortly after the so-called rebirth of Cambodia on 7th January 1979, a group of Boeng Kak Lak community has rallied in front of the Ministry of Interior to submit a petition to Deputy Prime Minister Sar Kheng to intervene in Tep Vanny’s and other Adhoc human right defenders’ cases. Demanding an immediate release of those rights activists is the main purpose of their petition.

After a short while, more community victims of forced eviction such as Phnom Bart, Borei Keila, Tuol Sangke amounting to 50 people also joined hand with Boeng Kak community and called for the release of their human rights defenders and activists.

NGOs such as Sahmakum Teang Tnaut and Licadho also observed this calling for human rights release. Moreover, some journalists from VOA, SBN, Khmer Post, FRA, VOD, Phnom Penh Post were buzzing around with their interviews.

After the petition was accepted to the Ministry of Interior, the community headed to National Assembly by walking and Tuk Tuks.

Dey Kraham arrival: There were some police there, but there was no violence.

At 10:00 am, they finally arrived the National Assembly and waited in front of the Lower House. Three petitions were being submitted to the National Assembly.

Mrs. Bov Sophea said “We are submitting the petition to Samdach Heng Samrin so that he can see how people are suffering, and hope he would seek freedom and release for Mrs. Tep Vanny and other human rights defenders.”

“We won’t stop at this stage. We will ask for helps from other related institutions and ministries. On this 18th January, Mrs. Tep Vanny is going to have a hearing at the Supreme Court in order to temporarily stay out of detention.” Said Sophea.

“During the meeting between Deputy Prime Minister Sar Kheng and Kem Sokha, we hope that they will make a deal on human rights release and lessen their political intensity.” said she.