Cambodia Mission Urges the Special Rapporteur to Strictly Observe the Code of Conduct and Manual of Operation

AKP Phnom Penh, September 09, 2020 —

The Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of Cambodia in Geneva has issued a statement urging the Special Rapporteur to strictly observe the Code of Conduct and Manual of Operation.

“The Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of Cambodia in Geneva is disturbed by personal view on 08 September 2020 of Professor Rhona Smith, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Cambodia, as to the nature of the Kingdom’s application of relevant laws seeking to shield law-abiding citizens and to guarantee peace, social order and public health for everyone,” said the statement dated Tuesday.

“Cambodia cherishes freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly in line with the law, and is deeply conscious that plurality of voices, including the critical one, matters in the development of the country,” it underlined. “However, article 31 of the Constitution of Cambodia underscores that exercise of personal rights and freedom by any individual shall not adversely affect rights and freedom of others. The exercise of such rights and freedom shall be in accordance with the law.”

It is noted that the Special Rapporteur has never ever stressed enough that the exercise of the freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly carries with it special duties, responsibilities and limitations provided by laws, as stipulated in article 29 (2) of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights as well as articles 19 (3), 21 and 22 (2) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, continued the same source, adding that the purposeful failure of this emphasis not only misleads the public but also emboldens certain forces, who readily exploit the situation for their hidden agenda.

As for objective and professional undertaking, the statement said, it is incumbent upon the Special Rapporteur to strictly observe the Code of Conduct for Special Procedures Mandate Holders of the Human Rights Council (particularly articles 3, 6, and 14), and Manual of Operations of the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council (particularly paragraphs 24 and 50), which detail general principles of the conduct, importance of duly cross-checked information-gathering, and communication procedures with the government.

By C. Nika