NGOs Demand Cambodia Scrap Draft Law Citing Potential Abuse of Women’s Rights

Three dozen organizations working to promote gender equality in Cambodia have called on the country’s government to scrap its Draft Law on Public Order (DLPO), expressing concern that dress codes for females and other provisions within the bill violate women’s human rights.

In a joint statement issued on Thursday, the 36 national and international groups said they are “disturbed” by the DLPO’s potential to subject women to criminal sanctions for dress and behavior that allegedly violate “arbitrary and discriminatory social norms related to women’s dress and conduct.”

The bill, which will take effect next year if approved by several government ministries and the National Assembly, would ban men from going out shirtless and stop women from wearing anything “too short” or “too see-through.”

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