Cambodia arrests foreigners for 'pornographic dancing'

In this photo dated Jan. 27, 2018, issued by Cambodian National Police, a group of foreigners stand after they were arrested for "dancing pornographically" at a party in Siem Reap town, near the country's famed Angkor Wat temple complex. (AP)
Updated 29 January 2018
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Cambodia arrests foreigners for 'pornographic dancing'

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia: Cambodian prosecutors charged 10 foreigners Sunday with producing pornographic pictures after they were arrested at a party in Siem Reap town, near the country’s famed Angkor Wat temple complex.
Police said they raided a rented villa on Thursday where the foreigners were taking part in what organizers billed as a pub crawl and found people “dancing pornographically.” While almost 90 foreigners were detained, all but 10 were released.
The 10 arrested are five British nationals, two Canadians, one Norwegian, one New Zealander and one from the Netherlands. A statement on the arrests posted on the National Police website Sunday included photos showing clothed young adults rolling around together on a dance floor.
The prosecutor of the Siem Reap provincial court, Samrith Sokhon, told The Associated Press by phone that those charged face up to a year in prison if convicted.
He said after producing the photos, the foreigners shared them on social media.
“Any people producing pornography is contrary to Cambodia’s traditions,” he said.
The United Kingdom’s Foreign Office confirmed they were in contact with British nationals in Cambodia.
“We are assisting five British men arrested in Cambodia and are providing support to their families,” the office said in an emailed response to questions from the AP.


Millions of women still landless despite global push for equality

Updated 15 min 59 sec ago
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Millions of women still landless despite global push for equality

  • Throughout rural areas in Zimbabwe, for example, widows routinely find themselves harassed and exploited by in-laws claiming the property their husbands left behind
WASHINGTON: Millions of women worldwide are still unable to access and own land despite laws recognizing their rights, researchers and campaigners said on Monday as they urged countries to bridge the gap between policy and practice.
Patriarchal attitudes toward women and girls and a lack of knowledge of their own rights “prevent millions of women from owning land,” said Victoria Stanley, senior rural development specialist at the World Bank.
“Only 30 percent of the world’s population own land titles, and women are often the least likely to have any land registered,” she told the Thomson Reuters Foundation on the sidelines of a World Bank conference in Washington, D.C.
“Stand for her land,” a campaign launched on Monday by the World Bank and advocacy groups including Landesa and Habitat for Humanity International, aims to change that by promoting better implementation of land laws for women.
Globally, more than 400 million women farm, yet only about 15 percent of farmland is owned by women, according to Landesa.
That inequality exposes women to all manner of rights abuses, rights activists say.
Throughout rural areas in Zimbabwe, for example, widows routinely find themselves harassed and exploited by in-laws claiming the property their husbands left behind.
Although Zimbabwe’s constitution gives women and men equal rights to property and land, in many rural communities tradition overrides national legislation, experts say.
Godfrey Massey of Landesa Tanzania said the existence of laws in itself does not necessarily translate into better access to land for women.
“Women can own land just as men, but few women are aware of this in Tanzania,” he said, calling for more initiatives at the community level to raise awareness of land rights.
“We’ve seen trainings lead to a rise in women joining village land councils or realizing that their husband can’t mortgage the family land without their consent,” he said.
Rajan Samuel of Habitat for Humanity India said that efforts to improve land rights must acknowledge cultural norms like India’s centuries-old Hindu caste system.
“You can have all the policies in the world, if you don’t engage the community from day one you won’t succeed,” he said.