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Cambodia: dissident begins hunger strike over prison conditions

Theary Seng’s stand comes ahead of U.S. President Joe Biden’s visit to Cambodia for this week’s ASEAN summits.

A prominent Cambodian political prisoner has begun a one-week hunger strike to protest the conditions of her imprisonment in northern Cambodia.

Theary Seng, a veteran Cambodian-American lawyer and longtime critic of the Hun Sen government, was imprisoned in a mass trial of opposition supporters in June and is currently serving a six-year sentence in Preah Vihear province, close to the Thai border.

In a statement today, Jared Genser, the U.S.-based lawyer representing the 51-year-old civil society activist, said that she began the strike to demand an immediate transfer back to Prey Sar Prison in the capital Phnom Penh. She is also demanding “the same rights that other prisoners have but she has been repeatedly denied, including having weekly access to church services and the ability to regularly make phone calls.”

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