Legal Analysis

International Law Protections for Minority Groups’ Right to Self-Identify

International law protects minority groups' right to self-identify in several key ways, confirms a new briefing paper released by Destination Justice today, "International Law on Minorities' Right to Self-Identify". The briefing paper explains that minority group protections stem from one core international law principle that states are prohibited from discriminating against a person on the basis of their race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.

Update on the Legal and Institutional Framework for the Protection of All Persons Deprived of their Liberty

Summary A person is deprived of his or her liberty when he or she is detained, either lawfully or unlawfully. Over ten million people are currently detained around the world by means of incarceration or imprisonment. However, other forms of detention include institutionalization for mental health reasons and detention due to migrant status. The failure to adequately protect the rights of those deprived of their liberty is a major roadblock in providing equal access to justice to all people. Whether a deprivation of liberty is arbitrary or legitimate, international human rights laws, standards, and other mechanisms provide certain protections to those deprived of their liberty. These protections aim to prevent abuses of those who have been deprived of their liberty, such as torture, neglect...

Protesting without permission: A brief analysis of freedom of assembly laws in Cambodia

In the wake of Cambodia’s contested election results, public gatherings and demonstrations have become increasingly common. The most recent discourse in this area has identified a lack of clarity regarding what constitutes a demonstration according to the law, when permission is needed from local authorities and when simple notification will suffice.  This briefing note takes a look at what the Law on Peaceful Demonstration 2009 provides, and whether it stands consistently with international norms. 1. What constitutes a demonstration? The Law on Peaceful Demonstration (“the Law”), enacted in December 2009, sets out the procedure for obtaining permission for all “peaceful gatherings or marches for demonstration in the Kingdom of Cambodia”, and the measures demonstration organisers must take...

Cambodia: 2013 Election Analysis – A Practical Perspective

The provisional results of the 2013 elections have been announced, with Minister of Information, Khieu Kanharith declaring a victory for the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP). In the statement released on Sunday night, the Minister announced that the ruling party had won 68 of the National Assembly’s 123 seats, whilst the main opposition party, the Cambodian National Rescue Party (CNRP) won 55 seats, although this figure varies. But what do the provisional results mean in relation to the formation of the new Government? Are they definitive? Can the CNRP challenge the result based on the alleged irregularities? When will the new Government officially be formed? Destination Justice takes a practical look at the Cambodian Elections 2013. Background Khieu Kanharith’s statement cut through the con...

Cambodia: the electoral process

Background In 1991, after having suffered of civil war for about two decades, the Cambodian political system marked a new turning point. All belligerents signed the Paris Peace Agreement, whose main purposes were to establish a ceasefire and hold democratic elections. It is no later than September 21, 1993 that a democratic Constitution was adopted. Under article 78 of Cambodian Constitution, the elections are held every five years. The Government is borned by the National assembly and shall be held accountable to this same body. Celebrating its 20 years this year, the 1993 Cambodian Constitution already saw the general elections being held four times, and will insure that the July, 28 2013 general elections will be held democratically. In order to better understand the electoral process i...

Drafted a report on “Access to Justice for Children” in Cambodia filed to the U​N Committee on the Rights of the Child

Drafted a report on “Access to Justice for Children” in Cambodia filed to the U​N Committee on the Rights of the Child.​ This report, drafted on behalf the NGO Coalition on the Rights of the Child, was based on extensive interviews we conducted with government officials and NGO representatives, detailed Cambodian children’s experience with criminal justice and outlined several areas for improvement.

Published a series of articles on the Cambodian national elections

Published a series of articles on the Cambodian national elections and their tense aftermath,which featured widespread demonstrations. Explaining the electoral process and relevant human rights, the articles were widely viewed on our website, and one was featured on Oxford University’s Human Rights Hub and later published in Oxford’s Global Perspectives on Human Rights anthology.

Cambodia gets ready for a Week Seminar with the Permanent Court of Arbitration

Next week, the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) the world’s preeminent arbitration institution will host an international arbitration workshop series attended by delegates from Cambodian government institutions, and academics and students. This series has been organised by the PCA in partnership with the Phnom Penh office of the organisation Destination Justice. The workshop series will take place between Monday, January 21 and Friday, January 25 and feature in-depth discussions between delegates and PCA officials on the the nature and advantages of international arbitration. In particular, it will  explain the role of the PCA and is intended to enhance cooperation between the Court and the Cambodian government. These workshops will be attended by some 55 government officials and preem...