Amnesty video shows ‘extreme overcrowding’ in Cambodia prison

Amnesty International has shared a new video it received that claims to show extreme overcrowding and “inhumane conditions” in a Cambodian prison amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The video, released on Friday, shows at least 25 prisoners crammed into a small cell and lying on the floor.

There is hardly any space for them to move, prompting Amnesty to label it “first-hand evidence of the inhumane conditions” in Cambodian prisons.

An Interior Ministry’s department of prisons spokesperson, Nouth Savna, told Al Jazeera he had not seen the video but acknowledged that severe overcrowding occurs in prisons.

“Yes, it does happen. I’m not going to deny it,” he said when shared with the conditions visible in the video, adding that it was a “temporary problem” as Cambodia has been working to address the issue by building new facilities.

He added that issues were a lot more systemic and, for example, caused by a slow judiciary.

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Leonie Kijewski