Cambodia sets age limit for foreign husbands

Cambodia sets age limit for foreign husbands

PHNOM PENH, March 16, 2011 (AFP) – Male foreigners over the age of 50 have been outlawed from marrying Cambodian women in the country under new rules designed to crack down on sham marriages and human trafficking, the government said Wednesday.

Foreigners who earn less than $2,550 per month are also barred from wedding local women, foreign ministry spokesman Koy Kuong told AFP, but the restrictions do not apply to weddings taking place overseas.

Marriages between old men and young women are “inappropriate”, Koy Kuong said, and foreign men who wish to marry nationals must earn a high salary to ensure that “Cambodian women can live a decent life”.

“We are preventing fake marriages and human trafficking,” he said, adding that the government was aware of cases, documented by rights groups, where Cambodian women were sent into prostitution or “used as slaves” in their husband’s home country.

The Cambodian foreign ministry has sent a diplomatic note to all the embassies and consulates in the country informing them of the new regulations, which came into effect on March 1.

Kek Galabru, president of local human rights group Licadho, praised the government’s intention to protect Cambodian brides.

But she said the new guidelines “go against Cambodian marriage law and international law” — specifically the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women.

“This is discrimination against women because they will not be allowed to marry men who are over 50… while Cambodian men can marry any foreign woman they choose,” she said.

Cambodia imposed a temporary ban on foreign marriages in 2008 to prevent human trafficking, amid concern over a sharp rise in the number of brokered unions involving South Korean men and poor Cambodian women.

That ban followed an International Organisation for Migration report that said many Cambodian brides suffered abuse after moving to South Korea in marriages hastily arranged by brokers who made large profits.

The restriction was lifted about eight months later after new laws were introduced to prevent women becoming mail-order brides.

http://www.thaivisa.com/forum/topic/451792-male-foreigners-over-50-outlawed-from-marrying-cambodian-women/

Police Bust Restaurant in Suphanburi Forcing 30 Laotian Girls into Sex Service

UPDATE : 9 February 2011
The Human Trafficking Suppression Police have cracked down on a brothel in central Suphanburi province, rescuing more than 30 Laotian girls.

Human trafficking police said they have arrested 48-year Surapha Pudpa, the owner of a restaurant called ‘Phraew’, along with two staff members, for their involvement in sex trade.

Police said a man notified officers after he recently visited the restaurant, where a man at the restaurant asked if he wanted to sleep with a Laotian girl.

Original article:
http://www.thailandoutlook.tv/tan/ViewData.aspx?DataID=1040574

After saying yes, the man, who refused to give his real name, was invited to the back of the restaurant where he found at least 30 Laotian girls waiting to be chosen.

The man said he deeply sympathized with an 18-year Laotian victim who claimed she was deceived and brought into the sex business.

Police added that the restaurant acquired the women through an agency that paid 5,000 baht to the parents of the victims, claiming the girls would be working at a good restaurant.

The initial investigation found that the Laotian girls have been forced to sell sex services without receiving payment, and were threatened to be chained and beaten up.

The girls were reportedly allow just one meal a day.

Police concluded by promising that all of the victims will undergo mental health rehabilitation and receive further care, in line with an international treaty, as soon as possible.

Sex workers, governments and UN join hands to boost AIDS response in Asia-Pacific region

PATTAYA, Thailand, 15 October 2010 – At the first-ever Asia-Pacific consultation on HIV and sex work, sex workers, government officials and United Nations participants emphasized the need for urgent action to increase focus and positioning of sex work within HIV responses in the region.

Close to 150 delegates from eight countries (China, Cambodia, Fiji, Indonesia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea and Thailand) met in Pattaya, Thailand, to form partnerships and review policies and laws that keep sex workers from accessing HIV services and sexual and reproductive health services.

“Sex work interventions must be central to scaling up the HIV response, and listening to sex workers is crucial,” said Jan Beagle, Deputy Executive Director of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) who spoke at the consultation. “Sex workers experience firsthand the effects of laws and harmful enforcement practices that violate their human rights and hamper progress on HIV,” he said. Continue reading

Cambodia: Sex Workers Face Unlawful Arrests and Detention

Officials Should Investigate and Close Government Centers Where Abuses Occur
July 20, 2010

(Phnom Penh) – The Cambodian government should act quickly to end violence against sex workers and permanently close the government centers where these workers have been unlawfully detained and abused, Human Rights Watch said in a new report released today. Human Rights Watch also urged the Cambodian government to suspend provisions in the 2008 Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation that facilitate police harassment and abuses.

Human Rights Watch’s 76-page report, “Off the Streets: Arbitrary Detention and Other Abuses against Sex Workers in Cambodia,” is based on more than 90 interviews and group discussions with female and transgender sex workers in Phnom Penh, Battambang, Banteay Meanchey, and Siem Reap. It describes how sex workers face a wide range of abuses, Continue reading

Pattaya Police clear Pattaya Beach of suspected Prostitutes

25th February 2010

Following orders from the new Pattaya Police Chief, Police Colonel Nantawoot, a team of Pattaya Police Officers assisted by civil volunteers, known in Thai as “O-Po-Po-Lor”, conducted a late night operation on Wednesday to clear Pattaya Beach of Prostitutes and others suspected of loitering with intent to engage in anti-social or criminal activity. A total of 60 people were rounded-up, including 20 transsexuals and 40 women. All were charged with offences relating to loitering with intent and prostitution and paid a small fine before being released back onto the Beach where they presumably continued with whatever they were doing prior to their arrest.

See original at Pattaya One news

Thailand: 57 alleged prostitutes rounded up in Phuket Town

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

PHUKET TOWN: A team of provincial civil defense officials and volunteer police on Sunday night raided three well-known entertainment venues, in the heart of Phuket Town, suspected of serving as fronts for prostitution.

A spokesperson from the Phuket Provincial Office Public Relations Bureau said the raids were ordered by Phuket Governor Wichai Phraisa-ngop following complaints from local residents that the three venues – two massage parlors and a nightclub – were actually fronts for prostitution.

A total of 57 alleged female prostitutes, including at least one Burmese girl under the age of 18, were rounded up by the special task force led by Phuket Deputy Governor (Palad) Chaiwat Tephee, Phuket Provincial Defense Office head Wirote Suwanwong, and volunteer police. Continue reading

Thailand: Police Crackdown On Foreign Operated Sex Bars

PATTAYA: — Informed sources from several police divisions have told the Pattaya Times that a very serious crackdown will begin next month to catch foreign business people who are financial backers of gay bars, beer bars and a go-gos where there is sex for sale in Pattaya.

These bars charge a “bar fine” to the customer and let the employee leave for the night or a “short time” usually about two to three hours. It is suspected that many of these rendezvous are sexually related, police said. Police investigations will determine who pays the bills and gets the profits. If the person is a foreigner then their visa will be revoked and they will be expelled from the Kingdom. If it is a Thai they will be arrested if sex is for sale. There is much concern about organized crime in the nightlife venues, said one official. Continue reading