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Groups Call for Re-Investigation of Union Leader’s Murder

  • Heng Reaksmey
  • VOA Khmer

On the 11th anniversary of the murder of labor leader Chea Vichea, union and opposition members called on the Cambodian authorities to re-open their investigation and find the true killers.

Chea Vichea, who had wide support among the nation’s workers at a turbulent time in the industry, was shot dead by two assailants on Jan. 22, 2004.

The true killers have never been found, though two men widely believed innocent spent nearly five years in prison for the crime before they were finally released.

Chea Mony, the brother of Chea Vichea, who is now the leader of the same union his brother once led, the Free Trade Union, joined some 200 supporters to mark the anniversary, near the news kiosk where he was shot. The authorities have ignored his requests to re-open the case, Chea Mony said.

Mourners placed flowers and burned incense near the site, on a busy Phnom Penh street, next to a pagoda.

Opposition leader Sam Rainsy said Thursday the case should be re-opened. “The killing of innocent people should end,” he said. “Cambodian authorities should bring the killers to justice.”