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Simon Henderson

Associate editor

Civil Party ‘Lucky’ to Survive Khmer Rouge

The Khmer Rouge tribunal on Tuesday heard the testimony of a civil party left traumatized by the workload at the Trapaing Thma dam worksite who said he felt lucky to have survived. But his appearance prompted defense lawyers to air concerns that civil parties testimony was threatening their clients’ right to a fair trial.

KRT Testimony Shows Differing Versions of Events

The Khmer Rouge tribunal heard further testimony Monday related to the Trapeang Thma Dam worksite, but the witness’ experience as a company chief supervising workers were hindered by his ailing memory, raising a series of contradictions throughout his questioning.

Police Raid Drug Dens, Arrest 88

More than 100 police officers descended on a notorious slum in Sen Sok district’s Toek Thla commune on Friday in a coordinated effort to flush out drug-related crime from the ghetto, ultimately arresting 88 people for using or selling crystal methamphetamine.

Angkor Temples Ranked Top of the World

The Angkor Wat temple complex in Siem Reap province is the world’s undisputed top tourist destination, according to Lonely Planet’s Ultimate Travelist 2015, an exhaustive list ranking sights and travel hotspots that was released on Monday.

Evils of Dam Boss Remain at Center of Tribunal Testimony

A former company chief at Trapeang Thma Dam worksite testified for a second day at the Khmer Rouge tribunal on Tuesday, shedding further light on the murderous command of dam boss Ta Val, who he said gave deputies carte blanche to kill their subordinates and would stalk the worksite in disguise.

KR Supervisor Tells of Commander’s Brutality

A former company chief at the Trapeang Thma Dam worksite told the Khmer Rouge tribunal on Monday how underperforming workers were punished by starvation and were put to a test, such as walking through fire, if it was suspected that they were faking illnesses.

After Turbulent Term, US Envoy Bids Farewell

Outgoing U.S. Ambassador William Todd met with Foreign Minister Hor Namhong on Thursday in his final official meeting, bringing an end to a tenure that saw visits from the U.S. president and first lady, as well as the disputed 2013 national election and violence that followed.

New Education Ministry Ban Comes Under Fire

The backlash began Wednesday against a new Education Ministry directive that bans political activities and unauthorized associations at academic institutions, with the country’s largest teachers’ union and various youth groups accusing the government of hypocrisy.

Request to Stop Indian Temple Moot as Not Angkor Wat Copy

Foreign Minister Hor Namhong on Tuesday informed Indian Ambassador Dinesh Patnaik that Cambodia wants plans to build an Angkor Wat replica in that country scrapped entirely, ministry spokesman Chum Sunry told reporters after a meeting between the two officials to mark Mr. Patnaik’s last day in his position.

Cambodia Set to Join Mekong Region Anti-Narcotics Force

Cambodia is planning to join the regional anti-drug-trafficking operation Safe Mekong, which aims to stem the flow of illegal narcotics through the notorious “Golden Triangle” area, after Thailand and Laos announced they had asked for Cambodia and Vietnam to be involved.

Woman Convicted for Trafficking Heroin

A 51-year-old Cambodian-Australian woman will spend at least four years in jail after being convicted by an Australian court of smuggling almost 650 grams of heroin into the country from Cambodia by swallowing hundreds of balloons packed with the drug, according to Australian media.

NGO Brings Trash Problem Into Greater Focus

Phnom Penh’s ever-growing garbage problem is not going away, but on Friday its scope became clearer as the Asia Foundation presented two years of research into the city’s present and future solid waste generation, along with suggestions on how to cope with the mess.

In Congested Capital, Gov’t Looks to Rail Transit

As Phnom Penh’s population expands in the coming decades—with expectations of 2.6 million people by 2035 and 5 million by 2050—Japan’s development agency on Thursday hosted a conference to review its plan to curb traffic congestion in the capital.

Airport Bribes Continue to Plague Visitors

International visitors to Cambodia are still being asked to hand over small bribes upon entering the country, despite promises over the past few years to stamp out the practice, the head of a tourism working group said he told the government during his last meeting in the position.

NOCC Draws Up Plan for 2023 SEA Games

The National Olympic Committee of Cambodia (NOCC) has drawn up a master plan for the 2023 SEA Games, kick-starting official preparations to ensure that the country is ready to host the region’s most important sporting event, NOCC Secretary-General Vath Chamroeun said Monday.

Criticism Mounts Over Charge Against Local Rights Defender

Human Rights Watch on Thursday added its voice to the criticism of Cambodia’s judiciary for defamation charges brought against Ny Chakyra, a senior human rights advocate who accused two judicial officials in Siem Reap province of misconduct in their handling of a land dispute.

Verdict in Agriculture Fraud Case Delayed

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Wednesday delayed a verdict in the $1-million fraud case brought by a Phnom Penh dentist against Cambodian-American businessman Richer San and three of his associates, saying further investigation is needed.

Angelina Jolie Begins Work on New KR Film

Angelina Jolie Pitt was in Phnom Penh on Tuesday to begin work on a Khmer-language film based on bestselling Khmer Rouge survival memoir “First They Killed My Father,” which will be co-produced by Oscar-nominated filmmaker Rithy Panh.

Gem and Jewelry Fair Loses Some of Its Luster

The 7th annual Cambodia Gems & Jewelry Fair got underway Thursday on Phnom Penh’s Koh Pich island, but even the glittering spectacle of models flaunting precious stock for government officials and VIPs could not hide the diminished luster of this year’s event.

Angelina Jolie to Direct Khmer Rouge Tragedy for Netflix

Actress Angelina Jolie Pitt is set to direct an adaptation of bestselling memoir “First They Killed My Father” by Khmer Rouge survivor Loung Ung, as an original feature film for Netflix, the online streaming company said in a statement on Friday.