"Human rights are our common heritage and their realization depends on the contributions
that each and every one of us is willing to make, individually and collectively, now and in the future."

Louise Arbour
United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights


HUMAN RIGHTS DAY 2004 - Statement by Dr. Kek Galabru, President of LICADHO

Today, we celebrate International Human Rights Day and renew our commitment to protecting and promoting human rights in Cambodia.

Statement by Dr. Kek Galabru, President of LICADHOThere is still so much work to be done in our country; and it is not easy work. We know that land-grabbing occurs throughout the country; affecting not only the indigenous peoples, farmers and the poor, but also the environment. We know that domestic violence, rape, sexual abuse and trafficking are still being committed against women and children. We know of the difficulties in gathering together to speak about these issues; as gatherings have rarely been allowed for the last two years. We also know how impunity and corruption undermine all attempts to protect and promote human rights in Cambodia . We have seen perpetrators remain unpunished, and have seen the results of bribery and corruption.

But, we also know that all Cambodians want a developed, peaceful country, where human rights are respected. We also know that if we continue to share our knowledge and expertise with each other, we can move towards achieving this goal. And we also know that if we work together and keep our commitment to human rights in our country, we will succeed.

Together we can press for a strong, impartial judiciary that will punish all those who violate human rights, in accordance with the law. We will urge the Cambodian government to pass initiatives to eliminate corruption and promote ethical, professional conduct. We will continue to work on protecting and promoting human rights in Cambodia , and share knowledge with others so that we can achieve what we all want.

Today's commemoration is a chance to demonstrate what we know and what we can do together. We would like to thank all the staff from Cambodian and international NGOs and UN agencies who took part in organizing today's activities for this wonderful opportunity.

We would also like to thank His Majesty King Norodom Sihamoni for graciously inviting some of us to meet with Him and for His support to the cause of human rights. And we would like to thank you all for joining us today, and showing your commitment to human rights in Cambodia .

For more information, please contact:

Dr. Kek Galabru, CHRAC Chairperson and President of LICADHO at 012 940 645
Mr. Thun Saray, President of ADHOC at 016 880 509