Cambodia Responds to Australia’s Comments regarding the Recent Wave of Arrests

The authorities must enforce public order, Justice Minister Koeut Rith says.

The Ministry of Justice on Sept. 24 released the response that the Cambodian government made to Australian Ambassador Pablo Kang who recently expressed concern regarding the recent arrests of activists, environmentalists and human rights defenders in the country.

Kim Santepheap, secretary of state at the Ministry of Justice, said that, during a meeting with Kang on Sept. 22, Justice Minister Koeut Rith told him that Cambodia adheres to the rule of law and that the authorities must take action to protect social security and public order.

“The arrest of any individual by the competent authorities was in accordance with the laws of Cambodia,” Rith said, according to Santeheap who posted the minister’s comments on his Facebook page. “Gathering in the streets to protest the release of an individual is putting pressure on the courts and law enforcement, which is not the legal way and deviates from the principle of the rule of law.”

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