Cambodia’s COVID-19 “fake news” crackdown

The Cambodian government has undertaken a recent spate of arrests, charging people with spreading "fake news" regarding COVID-19. Rights groups have expressed concern that this is merely a pretext for a clampdown on political dissent.

For most of us, Facebook is a platform to share stories and ideas with friends and family, that hopefully ends with comments, likes and maybe some shares. For a 14-year-old girl in Kampot’s Kampong Trach district, on March 12, her social media post ended in her arrest.

Sharing her concerns over COVID-19 on Facebook, the girl was worried three classmates had contracted the novel coronavirus and had heard of multiple virus-related deaths in her local province.

According to Human Rights Watch (HRW) deputy Asia director Phil Robertson, authorities went to her home and arrested her for the social media post. “[It] is completely outrageous and unacceptable,” Robertson told the Globe. “The police who barged into her house and arrested her in front of her family should be eternally ashamed of themselves.”

In full: https://southeastasiaglobe.com/cambodias-covid-19-fake-news-crackdown/

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