Cambodia: Critical Blogging is scarce.

About 200 bloggers from around Asia took part in Blogfest Asia 2012 in Siem Reap, with Internet freedom at the top of their agenda.

Blogfest Asia 2012 in Siem Reap,

This issue is a pressing one for many countries in the region.

  • In Vietnam imprisoned three bloggers, for writing about sensitive political issues.
  • In Malaysia, an opposition politician and blogger was sentenced in August to three months in prison for criticizing Malaysian information minister.
  • But in Cambodia’s nascent blogosphere, generally, direct criticism of the government is scarce and self-censorship is widespread.
  • In Cambodia, journalist Hang Serei Odom was killed just days after publishing an article that exposed links between a high-level military official and the illegal logging trade in Ratanakkiri.
  • Cambodian Independent radio station owner Mam Sonando was sentenced to 20 years in prison for allegedly leading a secession movement in Kratie province.
  • In a statement in May, Deputy Prime Minister Sok An, speaking about the anti-cybercrime law with European Union Ambassador Jean-Francois Cautain, was quoted as saying: “People use modern technology to spread false information, so we need a law to regulate them.”
  • Access is already restricted in Cambodia to a number of websites that post highly critical content about the ruling CPP, including the KI-Media and Khmerization blogs. The government, however, has continually denied involvement in blocking them.

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