UN rights expert calls for independent probe into mob killings in Cambodia

In a statement released in Geneva, Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s Special Representative for human rights in Cambodia, Peter Leuprecht, also urged a thorough probe of the recent grenade attack on villagers peacefully protesting renewed activities in the Pheapimex concession in Pursat province. The 13 November incident involved objections to the work of Pheapimex, a timber company. The envoy, who wrapped up a visit to Cambodia on Sunday, appealed to the authorities to “listen to the people and to be responsive to their concerns.” In a related development, Mr. Leuprecht today released a report on the human rights dimensions of land concessions in Cambodia. In a foreword to the document, he states that companies which have been given land rights display “little or no regard for the welfare of the people, and contribute little to State revenue.”

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