A letter to the Cambodian Prime Minister condemning the arrest of Rong Chhun, president of the Cambodian Confederation of Unions. In this joint-letter, the ITUC and ITUC-AP express that Rong Chuun’s arrest concerningly seems like a retaliation for Chhun’s trade union activities and criticisms on government policies during the economic downturn brought about the global pandemic.
There has been a trend of repression in Cambodia in the form of cyber control and surveillance over opinions in response to government as well as employer pandemic policies and action. Opposers and activists, like Chhun, have been subjected to unsubstantiated allegations, arbitrary arrests, criminalizations, and disproportionate penalties for challenging these policies and practices.
The ITUC and ITUC-AP relay that the trade union’s participation represents the interest of the working people who are key to economic resilience. They also urge the Cambodian government to uphold their obligations to ILO Convention No.87 in protecting freedom of speech and freedom of association of workers, and ultimately release Rong Chhun and other detained trade unionists whose only crimes were to exercise their right to free expression.