Cambodia: union leader bail request again denied (Update)Event
- Initial Date
- Jan 19, 2023
- Event Description
The Phnom Penh Municipal Court this morning denied bail to Chhim Sithar, president of the Labor Rights Supported Union of Khmer Employees of Nagaworld (LRSU), ordering her to remain in pre-trial detention in Correctional Center 2 prison. No reason was given for the denial.
Sithar was first arrested in January 2022 and spent two months in pre-trial detention after being charged with incitement alongside other members of her union. She was released on bail in March 2022, but she was again arrested in November by immigration police at the Phnom Penh International Airport while returning from a labour rights conference in Australia.
Authorities accused Sithar of violating bail conditions by leaving the country, despite neither Sithar nor her lawyers ever being informed of such conditions. She has been detained at Correctional Center 2 prison since 26 November 2022.
LRSU members have been striking since December 2021 following mass layoffs at the NagaWorld casino that included the union’s entire leadership and a significant number of members.
Sithar and 8 fellow LRSU leaders and members face up to two years in prison if they are convicted of incitement. Another six LRSU members were charged in February under the 2021 Covid-19 Law. In October, at least 18 additional union members were slapped with charges of breaking and entering; intentionally causing damage with aggravating circumstances; and unlawful arrest, detention and confinement, in a criminal case that also references more than 100 unnamed "followers".
- Impact of Event
- Gender of HRD
- (Arbitrary) Arrest and Detention
- Judicial Harassment
- Rights Concerned
- Right to liberty and security
- Labour rights defender
- Monitoring Status
- Event Location
- Event Location
- Summary for Publications
On 19 January 2023, Chhim Sithar, WHRD and labour rights defenders and president of the Labor Rights Supported Union of Khmer Employees of Nagaworld (LRSU) was denied bail during her pretrial detention by the Municipal Court in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.