Detained Union Leader Released After Violent Protest

Detained Union Leader Released After Violent Protest

Police released union representative Pheng Chuo yesterday after she was detained during a violent protest in front of the June Textile Factory in Phnom Penh’s Sen Sok district on Sunday.

Approximately 1,000 garment workers met in front of the municipal police station with representatives from the UN, Licadho, Adhoc and the Community Legal Education Center to appeal to municipal authorities for her release.

Ms Chuo, 39, who sustained a head injury after being struck with a baton by police, said after her release that she would “continue to encourage the worker protests as long as their demands remained unmet.” She said that she could not guarantee protesters would not resort to marching outside the factory again, despite repeated warnings by police not to do so.

Police forcefully broke up a protest on Sunday after it spilled over from the factory grounds onto Russian Federation Boulevard, disrupting traffic.

The former workers at June Textile, which burned down in March, are demanding a severance package of $150 for each year of service, while factory officials are offering just $20 per year.

Two protesters remained in critical condition yesterday, according to a statement released by the Free Trade Union of Workers.

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