Stop The Brutal Suppression of Workers and Trade Unions in Cambodia

Support Cambodian working people who have been struggling for their rights.

We condemn the Cambodian government for violently suppressing the legitimate strike organised and participated by the majority of garment, textile and footwear workers demanding higher minimum wage. Numerous media reports confirmed that the use of excessive force of the police and armed forces brutally killed at least four workers and severely injured 23 workers and supporters between 2nd and 3rd January 2013.

We have been informed that many arrests were made by authorities as well and 10 workers are under police and army custody up to date. It is very unfortunate that it was the government not the workers who initiated the violent clash between security forces and strikers. Since the beginning of the general strike on 23th December 2013, workers’ rallies and demonstrations have been done peacefully without such an incident. We know that violent clash began when the government tried to disallow workers to march peacefully on Veng Sreng Road on 2nd January. International and local media broadcasted that the riot police and soldiers armed with metal pipes, knives, AK47 rifles, slingshots and electric batons indiscriminately beat up union leaders, workers, supporters and passerbyers. Many were arrested with severe injuries, including Mr. Vorn Pao, President of IDEA (Independent Democracy of Informal Economy Association) and Mr. Theng Savoeun, Coordinator of CCFC (Coalition of Cambodian Farmer Communities). Instead of negotiating with strikers for a peaceful solution, the authority continued to deploy heavy-handed tactics until workers began to burn tires and set up roadblocks against armed forces. In the morning of 3rd January, armed forces finally started shooting live ammunition directly to workers, killing 4 workers and severely wounding many.
Friday, January 10, 2013

Independent Trade Union Federation (GSBI) and Trans-Factories Workers Forum (FBLP)

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