Thu the 2nd Waning of Āsāḷha B.E.2560, July 21, A.D.2016 Year of the Monkey
Washington, DC – The World Bank has refused to acknowledge its human rights obligations in its new policy framework, Human Rights Watch said today. The bank’s third, and most likely final, draft of its new environmental and social framework, published on July 20, 2016, does not require the bank to respect human rights. Instead, it only references human rights in its non-binding “vision” statement.
A subcommittee of the bank’s Board of Executive Directors endorsed the framework on July 20, allowing for its publication. It is expected that the framework will be approved when the Board of Executive Directors meets on August 4.
Sun the 13th Waxing of Āsāḷha B.E.2560, July 17, A.D.2016 Year of the Monkey
July 17, 2016
Hanoi, Vietnam (AP) — Dozens of Vietnamese who gathered for an anti-China protest in central Hanoi were taken away by authorities Sunday as they tried to rally support for an international tribunal’s ruling rejecting Beijing’s claims in the South China Sea.
About two dozen people were bused away from around the landmark Hoan Kiem Lake in Vietnam’s capital even before they began their protest. There was a heavy police presence around the lake, with cars briefly banned from around it.
The rally was organized by No-U, a Hanoi group that opposes China’s expansive claims in the South China Sea. It came after the Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration issued the ruling last week in a case initiated by the Philippines, which together with Vietnam is one of the claimants in the disputed waters.
China rejected the tribunal’s ruling and refused to take part in the arbitration.
The tribunal ruled that China violated international maritime law, specifically the Philippines’ maritime rights, by building up artificial islands that destroyed coral reefs and by disrupting fishing and oil exploration.
Nguyen Chi Tuyen, a member of No-U, said the activists who were detained by police were all released by early Sunday afternoon.
Another small group of activists gathered in front of the Philippine Embassy in Hanoi at around noon with banners that read “Thank you, Philippines, you have a brave government” and “China, you must comply with international law,” Tuyen said.
Vietnamese authorities have clamped down on such protests before, fearing they could stir dissent in the communist country.
USAID project seeks to boost capacity of civil society organizations.
Wed the 9th Waxing of Āsāḷha B.E.2560, July 13, A.D.2016 Year of the Monkey
The Diplomat, By Prashanth Parameswaran, July 13, 2016
Last week, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) announced a new project to boost the capacity of Cambodian civil society organizations and promote government accountability.
On July 7, USAID said that the five-year, $9 million Cambodian Civil Society Strengthening (CCSS) project, which was awarded to the East West Management Institute, would help the groups improve their management, planning and analytical skills while allowing them to be more active in Cambodia.
According to a statement released by the U.S. embassy in Cambodia, the CCCS project will help civil society organizations by demonstrating how to establish management structures, organizational lines of communication, standard operating procedures and human resource management systems. (more…)
Sun the 6th Waxing of Āsāḷha B.E.2560, July 10, A.D.2016 Year of the Monkey
A prominent Cambodian political analyst known for his trenchant criticism of the government was shot dead Sunday morning at a convenience store, police said.
The daylight slaying of Kem Ley comes at a time of heightened political tensions between strongman premier Hun Sen and the country’s political opposition, who accuse the prime minister of launching a fresh crackdown against them.
Police said Kem Ley, a popular commentator and grassroots campaigner, was gunned down as he drank coffee at a convenience store attached to a gas station in the capital Phnom Penh.
“He was shot dead at a mart just before 9am,” Kirt Chantharith, national police spokesman, told AFP.
A suspect was arrested nearby and confessed to killing the analyst over an unpaid debt, Kirt Chantharith said.
“But we don’t believe him yet. We are working on this case,” he added.
Cambodia has a long a tragic history of rights and labour advocates being murdered with their killers rarely brought to justice.
An AFP photographer at the scene said Kem Ley’s body lay in a large pool of blood below a metal table inside the convenience store.
Hundreds of onlookers had gathered as police cordoned off the area. One group of women were in tears.
Local media showed pictures of the alleged suspect being taken into custody. He appeared injured with blood running down the left-hand side of his face.
The killing will do little to lower already simmering tensions inside the impoverished Southeast Asian nation, which has been dominated by Hun Sen for the past 31 years in a reign marred by accusations of corruption, electoral fraud and rampant rights abuses.