Representatives from some of the world’s largest fashion brands and the leader of one of the world’s biggest union organizations met this week with Cambodian officials and local clothing manufacturers to demand better treatment and improve workplace safety for the country's estimated 600,000 garment workers.
Cambodian police on Monday fired smoke canisters to break up an anti-government demonstration calling for a license to be issued for an opposition TV channel. At least eight people were injured. Several hundred people gathered in the capital to press demand for a government critic to be allowed a TV license.
Last week saw five workers shot dead, at least thirty injured and twenty three arrested in a crackdown during a nationwide strike by garment workers, calling for an increase of the minimum wage in Cambodia from $100 to $160 per month. The deadly clashes took place near the Canadia Industrial Park in Phnom Penh, home to factories producing clothing for brands such as adidas, Puma and H&M.
Belying his hard-earned reputation as his country's strongman, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen said years ago that his prowess in overcoming adversaries did not lie in his strength, but in their weakness. Hun Sen, 61, has ruled Cambodia for close to 30 years, but now he faces the first real test of his strength in a decade and a half.
Tens of thousands of antigovernment demonstrators marched through Phnom Penh on Sunday in one of the biggest acts of defiance against the nearly three decades of rule by Cambodia’s authoritarian prime minister, Hun Sen. The procession, which was peaceful and stretched for several miles through a commercial district of Phnom Penh, the capital, brought together protesters with a diverse list of grievances: Buddhist monks, garment workers, farmers and supporters of the main opposition party.
In the largest demonstration since the disputed July elections, hundreds of thousands of Cambodia's opposition party supporters marched through the streets of the capital Phnom Penh on Sunday calling for Prime Minister Hun to step down and to announce new polls.
Since last month, Cambodians and Filipinos have been staging massive outdoor rallies in their respective capitals but curiously they are denying that these are protests. After accusing the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) of manipulating the July 28 election results, the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) organized an assembly on August 6, presumably to protest the election fraud.
Over the weekend, Cambodia’s opposition coalition, the Cambodian National Rescue Party (CNRP), held a large rally in Phnom Penh to protest the national election commission’s ratifying of the results of this summer’s election. The national election commission—which is controlled by the long-ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP)—essentially said that all the results of the summer national election were valid, that Prime Minister Hun Sen’s CPP had won 68 seats in Parliament, enough to form a government, as compared to 55 for the CNRP.