South-East Asia Today
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South-East Asia Today
Daily News in South-East Asia (Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam)
Curated by AlterAsia
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Cambodia: Garment workers parade beautiful clothes, ugly realities

Cambodia: Garment workers parade beautiful clothes, ugly realities | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

About 300 garment workers, NGO staff, civil servants and media staged a “fashion show” at the United Sisterhood Alliance-Worker’s Information Center (US-WIC) in Phnom Penh on May 25, called “Beautiful Clothes, Ugly realities”.

As the Cambodian government still bans its opponents from using Freedom Park for protests, the fashion show was seen as a new, creative way of getting across our message.

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Cambodian Rights Worker Faces Death Threats Over Land Dispute

Cambodian Rights Worker Faces Death Threats Over Land Dispute | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

His organization plans to file a complaint with the city court. 
The worker, Vann Sophath, was shooting a video at the dispute site in Phnom Penh's Sangkat Boueng Kak 1 on May 9 when he was confronted by around six civilians known to work as security guards for the developer, Khun Sear Import Export Company, CCHR said in a statement.
“Vann Sophath went to the site while the Khun Sear Company security guards were demolishing the home of one of the three families,” the statement said.

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How much do workers get as a minimum wage in Asean countries?

How much do workers get as a minimum wage in Asean countries? | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it
The minimum wage in Asean varies across countries. Not all Asean countries stipulate a minimum wage but indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and the Philippines do.
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Asie(s)'s curator insight, September 20, 2014 3:23 PM

The minimum wage in ASEAN — La question du salaire minimum dans l'ASEAN.

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Australia-Cambodia Refugee counter-offer in works

Australia-Cambodia Refugee counter-offer in works | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it
THE government is in the final stages of talks with Australia about sending refugees from a detention centre in the South Pacific to resettle in Cambodia, a Ministry of Foreign Affairs official has told Australian media.
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Cambodia: Acts of intimidation and death threats against Mr. Vann Sophath, CCHR Land Reform Project Coordinator

Cambodia: Acts of intimidation and death threats against Mr. Vann Sophath, CCHR Land Reform Project Coordinator | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a joint programme of the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) and the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), requests your urgent intervention in the following situation in Cambodia.

AlterAsia's insight:
The Observatory has been informed by the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR) about acts of intimidation and death threats against Mr. Vann Sophath, CCHR Land Reform Project Coordinator, while conducting a visit at the site of a land dispute between the Khun Sear Company and three families in Sangkat Boeung Kak I, Khan Tuol Kork, Phnom Penh.
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Borneo natives take anti-dams campaign to Europe

Borneo natives take anti-dams campaign to Europe | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

NGO delegation from Sarawak visits Switzerland and Norway to meet government officials and European energy corporations’ headquarters – ABB and Norconsult to be held accountable for their Malaysia business.

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Radio Free Sarawak Picks Up Key Award In Australia

Radio Free Sarawak Picks Up Key Award In Australia | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it
The team from the independent Iban language radio show Radio Free Sarawak (RFS) have won recognition in Australia, with a key award from the University of Queensland in Brisbane. The Communication ...
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Myanmar keeps Rohingya Muslims from upstaging summit

Myanmar keeps Rohingya Muslims from upstaging summit | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it
The plight of Myanmar's stateless Rohingya minority was absent from official discussions during a biannual summit of Southeast Asian leaders this weekend, despite growing concern of the issue's regional implications.
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Trafficker gets 10 years

Trafficker gets 10 years | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

The manager of Giant Ocean International, a now-defunct recruitment firm notorious for abuse scandals, was sentenced yesterday to 10 years in jail for trafficking hundreds of Cambodian fishermen to work in slave-like conditions overseas.

Taiwanese national Lin Yu-shin, who ran the firm, was arrested in May last year in Siem Reap, where she was in hiding under a different name.

Anti-human trafficking and juvenile protection police tracked her down after receiving nearly 170 complaints that Lin’s company sold Cambodian fishermen into slavery, promising them lucrative jobs in Malaysia, the Philippines and Japan, but sending them instead to work up to 24-hour unpaid days on vessels primarily in Africa between 2009-2011.

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Crossroads : Video Stories of Migrants in Malaysia

Crossroads : Video Stories of Migrants in Malaysia | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

Crossroads is a video advocacy project aimed at developing and strengthening the advocacy and documentation capacity of migrant workers, refugees, stateless persons, and their support organisations in Malaysia. It is a collaboration between EngageMedia and Citizen Journalists Malaysia.

Malaysia has the highest numbers of migrant workers in Southeast Asia. According to government statistics from July 2013, the country has 2.1 million registered migrant workers and an estimated 1.3 illegal migrant workers within its borders. This means one in three workers comes from outside Malaysia.

Workers without valid documentation are considered illegal and are often subjected to various forms of abuse – ranging from illegal withholding of salaries, to engagement in bribery, and rape. However, the reality of the workers’ situations are not widely known or reported in the media. Various negative stereotypes exist in a hostile climate in the host community.

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CCIM condemns beating of VOD reporter, calls for investigation

CCIM condemns beating of VOD reporter, calls for investigation | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

Voice  of Democracy  reporter  Lay Samean  remains  hospitalized  this evening  for injuries sustained  when he was severely  beaten  by security  forces  during  an election  campaign march in Phnom Penh today. The Cambodian Center for Independent Media (CCIM) and Reporters Without Borders condemn this act of violence in the strongest terms possible and calls on city  officials  to  launch  an  immediate  investigation  to  find  those  responsible  for  this disturbing attack.

AlterAsia's insight:

Friday’s attack comes just one day ahead of World Press Freedom Day on May 3, a day set aside by the United Nations to defend the media from attacks on their independence and to pay tribute to journalists who have lost their lives in the exercise of their profession. 

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Vietnamese rubber projects on hold in Cambodia

Vietnamese rubber projects on hold in Cambodia | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

Controversial Vietnamese rubber giant Hoang Anh Gia Lai (HAGL) has suspended part of its operations in Ratanakkiri province amid an investigation by the World Bank’s investment arm into claims of land grabbing, a company memorandum reveals.

During the reclamation suspending period, the subsidiaries are only allowed to tidy up and to collect the branches of trees in the already reclaimed areas prior to 28 April 2014,” the company memo says.

In February, 17 indigenous communities who accused HAGL of land grabbing in their home villages in Ratanakkiri province filed a complaint with the IFC – which invests in the rubber producer via an intermediary fund called Dragon Capital Group.

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Two members of Anonymous Cambodia arrested

Two members of Anonymous Cambodia arrested | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it
Two members of Anonymous Cambodia, the local arm of the international “hacktivist” collective, were arrested earlier this month following an eight-month-long investigation in conjunction with the US Federal Bureau of Investigation, the National Police announced yesterday.
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Laos: Crony scheme in control of press and civil society

Laos: Crony scheme in control of press and civil society | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

When travellers and writers talk about Laos, they mention how peaceful it is, and how Buddhist. The people, says Lonely Planet, are some of the most chilled out in the world.  People forget, as they rarely do with Vietnam or China, that it is still a communist state.

The Lao People’s Revolutionary Party (LPRP) has absolute control over the press and civil society. Professor Martin Stuart-Fox, a Laos expert with the University of Queensland, has written widely on the country’s history and government and has said that the party is little more than a crony scheme, with many of those in power now descended from the old Lao aristocracy. It is necessary to have a powerful patron, almost always in the party or closely connected to it, for success. Information is difficult to get hold of and even local journalists, who often have close ties to the government, complain publicly, if respectfully, about the impenetrability of government departments.

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Gas Station Workers Join in Strikes for Raised Wages #cambodia

Gas Station Workers Join in Strikes for Raised Wages #cambodia | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it
Employees say they make between $110 and $130 a month at Caltex, a brand under the US-based Chevron Corporation, whose net income in 2013 was $120 billion.
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Demand for rare wood puts Cambodians in danger

Demand for rare wood puts Cambodians in danger | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

Chinas appetite for Mekong rosewood fuels an illegal violent industry.

In February, Po Chanthorn left his wife and baby daughter to join a group of men hunting for illegal rosewood along the Thai-Cambodian border. The work came with the high risk of being shot at by Thai soldiers, but it was also the 26-year-old’s best chance at making enough money to live on.

“Our living standard is poor,” Chanthorn’s wife, Nov Samon, said last week. “If we had a better life, he would never have had to go to Thailand to log rosewood.”

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Oz an example for mining reform

Oz an example for mining reform | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it
Inspired by Australian mining regulations, the Cambodian government is considering a raft of changes to the mineral resources mining law, including a rethink of the sector’s comparatively high tax rate.
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Cambodia : Caltex workers strike to demand $160 minimum wage in gas stations

Cambodia : Caltex workers strike to demand $160 minimum wage in gas stations | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it
This morning starting at 7:00 am, more than 200 workers at 17 Caltex gas stations in Phnom Penh began a strike demanding a monthly wage of at least $160 and other staff benefits. Most Caltex...
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Labour leaders decry bail payment and nine arrests

Labour leaders decry bail payment and nine arrests | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it
Labour union leaders denounced the government yesterday, alleging unfair treatment in the wake of nine union worker arrests last week and a hefty bail payment by a union president yesterday.
Ath Thorn, president of the Coalition of Cambodian Apparel Workers’ Democratic Union (C.CAWDU), yesterday paid $25,000 in bail to Phnom Penh Municipal Court.
AlterAsia's insight:

In a separate case, three union representatives arrested in front of Kandal province’s Quint Major Industrial garment factory now face incitement charges in provincial court following their arrest last Friday, Kandal provincial police chief Eav Chamroeun said.

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Thailand: Six people now in jail under lèse-majesté laws

Thailand must release all six people currently detained under draconian lèse-majesté laws, FIDH and its member organization Union for Civil Liberty (UCL) said today. On 1 May, the Court of Appeals upheld the conviction of activist Yotwarit Chuklom, better known as Jeng Dokjik, to two years in jail for lèse-majesté under Article 112 of the Criminal Code. On 6 May, the Supreme Court rejected Jeng's request for bail. Jeng is now detained in Bangkok’s Remand Prison.

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Cambodia’s Top Court Denies Bail to 21 Jailed Protesters

Cambodia’s Top Court Denies Bail to 21 Jailed Protesters | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

Cambodia’s Supreme Court on Friday upheld a decision refusing bail to 21 people arrested during a deadly worker strike crackdown, a defense lawyer said, as dozens of supporters protested outside, calling the charges against them politically motivated and demanding their release.

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Mental health woes for southern Thai women

Mental health woes for southern Thai women | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it
Activists and academics in southern Thailand are calling for improved assistance, including mental health services, for women affected by the decade-long armed conflict between government forces and Muslims seeking greater autonomy.
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Six months on, Philippines typhoon survivors lack adequate shelter

Six months on, Philippines typhoon survivors lack adequate shelter | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

As the Philippines braces for a new season of cyclones, many in the centre of the country are still feeling the effects of Typhoon Haiyan, which devastated large parts of the area six months ago.
More than two million people remain without adequate or durable shelter, says the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). 
The authorities say an estimated 100,000 continue to live in tents. Many people have not started rebuilding their homes at all.

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‘Burst’ of Land Disputes Sees Dozens of Cambodians Charged: Rights Group

‘Burst’ of Land Disputes Sees Dozens of Cambodians Charged: Rights Group | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it

Following a “burst” of new land disputes, 48 people were charged for their alleged roles in land disputes in the first quarter of 2014 alone and 12 among them had been detained, compared to 100 people charged and 20 detained last year, Adhoc said in a new report.

A new report says government concessions are largely responsible.

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Singapore : Shopping malls and hotels will have to report waste and recycling data from next year.

Singapore : Shopping malls and hotels will have to report waste and recycling data from next year. | South-East Asia Today | Scoop.it
SINGAPORE - About 250 shopping malls and hotels will need to report waste and recycling data to the National Environment Agency (NEA) from next year.They must state the weight of waste discarded and that channelled for reuse and recycling, broken down by type, such as paper, metals and food. Their reports must reach the agency by the first quarter of next year.Companies must also submit waste reduction plans.
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