dimanche, août 13, 2006

Group Call For New Probe Into Journalist Deaths


By Kay Kimsong

A Cambodian journalists associa­tion on Friday called for fresh investi­gations into the killings of six Khmer journalists following the decision to reopen the case of Koh Santepheap newspaper publisher Thong Uy Phang who was shot and wounded by assassins in 1988.

Last week the Phnom Penh Mu­nicipal Court revived the investiga­tion into Thong Uy Phang’s shoot­ing, court prosecutor Ouk Savouth said Friday.­

The revival came days after for­mer police chief Heng Pov fled the country in the face of an arrest war­rant for the killing of a municipal judge and attempted assassinations of three others.

Heng Pov has long been linked to the shooting of Thong Uy Phang.

“The association calls on prosecutors and court directors to also re­vive the investigations into the crimes against the others journalists,” the Khmer Journalists Democracy Association said in a statement.

The association called for justice in 1994 kiIlings of Voice of Khmer Youth publisher Non Chan, Koh Santepheap reporter Chan Data, and Khmer Ideal puhlisher Thon Bunly; the l997 killing of Fighter newspaper reporter Cheath Duongdaravuth and the 2003 assassination of Funcinpec radio broadcaster Chuor Chet­harith. It also called for an investiga­tion into the killing of Chhou Chhouam Mongkul publisher of In­tervention newspaper, the shooting of Ek Mongkul a Funcinpec radio Commentator, and the alleged death threats this year against Love Khmer newspaper publisher You Saravuth.

“We Khmer journalists have to protect each other, help to find out the killers and find out the truth why several journalists were targeted,” Sok Sovann, the president of the KJDA said Friday.

Oum Sarin, president of the Cambodian Association for the Protect­ion of Journalists, joined the call to reinvestigate the cases.

Prach Sim, editor of the best-sell­ing Popular Magazine said that he also supported the KJDA but noted that times have improved for journ­alists since 1993.

Minister of Information Khieu Kanharith said that court investiga­tions into the cases highlighted by the KJDA have not stopped.

“The association should specify what the court has done wrong,” he said. “They are running on low bat­teries.”

Published by Khemara Jati
August 13, 2006