United Nations human rights experts have once again spoken out against the worsening political situation in Cambodia, as the government of Prime Minister Hun Sen readies a new legal offensive against dissidents and opposition figures.
In a statement released on November 16, Mary Lawlor, the U.N.’s Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, called for an immediate end to the systemic detention and criminalization of human rights defenders, and the use of excessive force by the Cambodian authorities.
“I am increasingly concerned by the circular pattern of detaining them for advocating against the detention of or violations against fellow defenders,” Lawlor said in the statement, which was signed by eight other U.N. human rights officials. “This cycle must end.” She added that at least 21 Cambodian human rights defenders had been subjected to threats and arbitrary arrest in the past three months.
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