See More on Facebook

Current affairs

Thailand extradites labor activist

Thailand is once again under the spotlight for extraditing dissidents and refugees.


Written by

Updated: December 14, 2018

With the world’s eye on the ongoing saga surrounding the Bangkok arrest and possible extradition of Bahraini footballer Hakeem al-Araibi, the Southeast Asian country followed through on another, politically-tinged extradition.

On Wednesday, Thailand sent back to Cambodia a labor activist sought by authorities for the role he played in the production of a recently released documentary about sex trafficking. The government of Cambodia claims the documentary, produced by RT titled “My Mother Sold Me,” contained falsehoods and coerced statements and served to “seriously [damage] the Kingdom’s honor.”

Rath Rott Mony, 47, president of the Cambodian Construction Workers Trade Union, who assisted in the making of the documentary, was arrested in Bangkok late last week and is in the process of being handed over to Cambodian authorities for questioning.

“Thai authorities have cooperated with us and arrested the individual. They have detained [the suspect] for several days, and they will send him to us soon,” Deputy National Police Chief Lieutenant General Chhay Kim Khoen told The Phnom Penh Post.

According to Human Rights Watch, there are strong reasons to believe that Mony faces “politically motivated prosecution, wrongful detention, and ill-treatment in Cambodia.”

This isn’t the first time Thailand has completed a questionable extradition of a Cambodian activist. The two countries have a history of exchanging political dissidents, human rights defenders, journalists and more.

In February of this year, for example, Thailand deported Sam Sokha who was wanted by Cambodian authorities for throwing shoes at a ruling party billboard bearing the image of Prime Minister Hun Sen. The charges against her carried a combined sentence of over three years.

At the time of her extradition, Sokha was recognized by the United Nations as a refugee.

As for Mony, Human Rights Watch condemned his deportation from Thailand.

Thailand should not do Cambodia’s bidding by forcibly returning an outspoken activist who exposed police failures to stop abuses and child sex trafficking,” said Brad Adams, Asia director in a statement.

“Thai authorities should immediately release Rath Rott Mony and allow him to seek protection from the United Nations refugee agency,” Adams added.

 



Enjoyed this story? Share it.


Quinn Libson
About the Author: Quinn Libson is an Associate Editor at Asia News Network

Eastern Briefings

All you need to know about Asia


Our Eastern Briefings Newsletter presents curated stories from 22 Asian newspapers from South, Southeast and Northeast Asia.

Sign up and stay updated with the latest news.



By providing us with your email address, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

View Today's Newsletter Here

Current affairs

Nearly 20,000 illegal Nepali workers in Malaysia can return home

Local authorities announce general amnesty. Thousands of Nepali migrant workers, who have violated immigration rules in Malaysia and are liable to legal action, will be able to return home because the Malaysian government has announced a general amnesty scheme for undocumented foreigners. The five-month-long amnesty scheme—called Program Back for Good—will provide illegal foreigners, including thousands of Nepali workers, an opportunity to return to their respective home countries before the Malaysian government cracks down on them and makes arrests. An estimated 15,000-20,000 Nepali migrant workers who are overstaying their visit or are living without valid documents in Malaysia can make use of the latest amnesty. “There is no exact data on the number of Nepali wo


By The Kathmandu Post
July 21, 2019

Current affairs

Ruling bloc set to keep majority in Japan

The move has significant impact on any attempts to rewrite Japan’s pacifist constitution. The ruling Liberal Democratic Party and its coalition partner Komeito are set to win the majority of the 124 seats up for grabs in the House of Councillors election, according to tallies by The Yomiuri Shimbun on Sunday night after polls closed at 8 p.m. The ruling bloc is expected to maintain its majority in the 245-member upper house, taking into account the 70 seats it holds that were not up for election this year. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is on the verge of securing his sixth successive national election victory, is expected to move forward on issues concerning the consumption tax rate hike and the amending of the Constitution. Abe’s current term as LDP president expires in September 2021. Some LDP members were concerned that the Abe administration wo


By The Japan News
July 21, 2019

Current affairs

Beijing wants implementation of Rohingya repatriation deal

The deal was presumed dead after Myanmar failed to meet certain conditions. Outgoing Chinese Ambassador Zhang Zuo today said Beijing wants implementation of the Bangladesh-Myanmar agreement on Rohingya repatriation. “We want execution of the deal signed between Bangladesh and Myanmar on the repatriation of the Rohingyas,” he said while paying a farewell call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at her official Ganabhaban residence here this afternoon. After the meeting, PM’s Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed reporters. In response, the prime minister said if the repatriation of the forcibly displaced Rohingyas starts, even on a small scale, it will be good for all. The prime minister congratulated the Chinese envoy for successfully completing his tenure in Bangladesh. “The diverse field of activities has given momentum in raising our bilateral relations to a new height,” she said. Referr


By Daily Star
July 19, 2019

Current affairs

Dozens die in suspected arson at animation studio in Kyoto

The perpetrator has been arrested. More than two dozen people died when a fire, possibly caused by arson, broke out at a studio managed by animation production company Kyoto Animation Co. in Fushimi Ward, Kyoto, on Thursday morning. The Kyoto city fire department initially confirmed that one person had died, but dozens were later found in cardiac arrest inside the three-story building. The Kyoto Prefectural Police later confirmed that 25 people had died. According to the fire department, a nearby resident made an emergency call at about 10:35 a.m., saying they had heard the sound of an explosion. Officials of the prefectural police rushed to the studio and found a man, 41, on a road near the studio. The man told them, “I sprinkled liquid on the first floor and set it on fire.”


By The Japan News
July 19, 2019

Current affairs

Death toll in Mumbai building collapse likely to rise

A massive rescue operation is underway in India. The death toll in the building collapse in India’s financial capital Mumbai rose to 14 on Wednesday as rescue operations continued for the second day after the 100-year-old structure crumbled to the ground under incessant rains on Tuesday.   The death toll is likely to go up further as the rescue operations progress, an official from the Mumbai disaster management cell said. Dozens are still feared trapped in the rubble. At least 40 to 50 people were feared trapped under the debris of the four-storey building in the Dongri locality of Mumbai, local residents said. The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) is also carrying out rescue and search operations with the help of sniffer dogs. Nine people, including two children, have been rescued so far. Three NDRF teams were joined by the fire


By Ishan Joshi
July 18, 2019

Current affairs

ANN Network editor wins press freedom award

Committee to Protect Journalists honours Editor Dawn Zaffar Abbas with press freedom award. Editor Dawn Zaffar Abbas has been awarded the 2019 Gwen Ifill Press Freedom Award by the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) for “extraordinary and sustained achievement in the cause of press freedom”, the body announced on Tuesday. CPJ’s Gwen Ifill Press Freedom Award, previously known as the Burton Benjami Memorial Award, was renamed in 2017 to honour a veteran journalist and former board member who died in 2016. “The award is presented annually to an individual who has shown extraordinary and sustained achievement in the cause of press freedom,” notes the CPJ website. Notable past recipients of the award include


By Dawn
July 17, 2019