Bopha has been an activists for the Boeung Kak Lake community, where thousands have been forcibly evicted from their homes since 2007. She was arrested in September 2012 for planning the assault of two men and convicted in December 2012 despite zero evidence linking her to the crime. She is currently serving a three-year sentence.
Amnesty International believes that Bopha was targeted for her housing rights activism and is a prisoner of conscience, detained for defending the right to housing and freedom of expression. While in prison, she is separated from her 10-year-old son and her husband, who is in poor health and cannot work.
Write a Letter to Demand Yorm Bopha’s Release
Below is a sample letter you can use to help free Yorm Bopha. All the information you need is provided.
Ang Vong Vathana
Minister of Justice
Ministry of Justice
No 240 Sothearos Blvd
I am writing to urge you to release human rights defender Yorm Bopha. I fear that the Cambodian government has tried to silence Bopha by imprisoning her on fabricated charges as a result of her peaceful activism defending rights of the Boeung Kak Lake community.
Yorm Bopha has been imprisoned since September 4, 2012, when she was accused of planning an assault on two men. On December 27, 2012, she was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment, after an unfair trial. No evidence links Yorm Bopha to the crime.
Yorm Bopha seems to have been imprisoned in retaliation for her peaceful housing rights activism on behalf of the Boeung Kak Lake community. Around 20,000 people have been forcibly evicted from their homes on and around Phnom Penh’s Boeung Kak Lake since 2007. Yorm Bopha is a prisoner of conscience, detained on baseless charges as a result of her peaceful activism defending her community’s right to housing. While in prison, Yorm Bopha is separated from her 10-year-old son and her husband, who is in poor health.
I call on you to release Yorm Bopha immediately and unconditionally. Furthermore, I ask that you publicly condemn and order an end to the harassment of and violence against human rights defenders. Such harassment includes unwarranted legal action and imprisonment.
Thank you for your attention to this important matter.
Please Help at Our Write for Rights Event this Saturday
If you don’t want to write these letters on your own, or if you want to encourage others to help free Yorm Bopha, then please join us Dec 7 for the St. Louis chapter’s letter writing marathon. We do need people to work our table, where we allow patrons a chance to sign petitions and form letters on these cases, particularly from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. If you can’t work the table, then stop by and join us for the event to write letters or to sign petitions! Our goal is 200 letters, and every one counts toward helping people like Yorm Borpha.
Hope to see you there!