Cambodia to release 10,000 prisoners

There are currently 31,000 inmates in Cambodia’s prisons. Photo supplied The Phnom Penh Post. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

PHNOM PENH, May 31, 2020, NST. About 10,000 of Cambodia’s prisoners will be freed as part of the country’s anti-prison overcrowding campaign, New Straits Times reported.

Interior Minister Sar Kheng said the bulk of the inmates had mostly served their sentences and would continue to be monitored after their release to prevent repeat offences.

He said the government had been working to tackle overcrowding in prisons, which has aroused concerns on human rights issues and puts a burden on the state to spend huge sums of money for the inmates.

He said the authorities would be tasked with monitoring the nearly 10,000 inmates after their release.

“Those who are incarcerated or convicted for misdemeanours and have nearly completed their sentences are almost certainly able to be released, except for criminal cases,” Sar Kheng said.

He said the government was looking for other ways to rehabilitate them.

Minister of Justice Koeut Rith told The Phnom Penh Post that pardoning convicts to avoid overcrowding in prisons was allowed by law if the offences were minor.

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