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Achievements of CDP

Over the past two decades, CDP has striven for equal access to justice for the poor and vulnerable, for the institutional developing towards the rule of law and for the support of victims of human rights abuses. CDP had various successes in the GBV Section (since 2009) of its work as well as in the Legal Section, the latter containing different departments over time such as the Legal Awareness Program, the Women Resource Center, the Center against Trafficking, the Legal Aid Division and the Justice for the Survivors from Democratic Kampuchea (JUSDEK) program. Together, CDP’s departments can be proud of their key achievements.

Achievements of the Legal Section

  • providing free legal aid in 16,522 cases. Therefrom two thirds were criminal and one third civil cases, a great part of the latter related to land issues. Acquittal or dismissal was reached in 29% of all criminal cases
  • training of 11,730 persons (about a third police officers) on law, criminal investigation techniques, trial techniques and specific issues such as domestic violence and human trafficking. Capacity building and improving legal knowledge among legal officers is a major focus of CDP’s work
  • deployment of 95 (mostly female) sentinels against domestic violence in the countryside 2010-2012. They educated 7000 villagers on domestic violence, intervened in nearly 2000 cases and reduced violence in 84% of the targeted families
  • receiving the first acquittal in modern Cambodian judicial history to suppress the forced confession of a pregnant woman who miscarried following torture by police
  • securing the first restraining order preventing a violent husband from selling his wife's property
  • achieving the pre-trial release of a Cambodian editor jailed for publishing articles about an attempted coup and the release of human rights workers arrested in violation of the rights to freedom of association and assembly
  • providing expert advice on draft laws, such as Khmer Rouge Tribunal Law, Commune Election Law, Code of Criminal Procedure and the Cambodian Penal Code
  • having a petition read by Parliament, the first NGO to do so, and were the first to be officially requested by a parliamentary committee to comment on draft legislation. 

Achievements of the GBV-Section

  • conducting the first focussed research on Gender-based Violence (GBV) during the Khmer Rouge and breaking the silence on the topic: GBV did happen, and on a large scale, in “Democratic Kampuchea”
  • hosting three non-judicial truth-telling forums in the form of Women’s Hearings, held 2011, 2012 and 2013
  • representing 113 Civil Parties in cases of GBV at the Khmer Rouge Tribunal
  • successfully lobbying  with other advocates for the inclusion of forced marriage and rape in the trial of Khmer Rouge leaders at the ECCC
  • successfully advocating to the international CEDAW Committee in 2013 to make recommendations to the Cambodian Government concerning justice and reparations for GBV survivors
  • conducting a monthly Khmer radio show with survivors, researchers and lawyers broadcasted in Phnom Penh and the countryside
  • establishing the biggest online collection of reports, research,  films and information material on Gender-based Violence under the Khmer Rouge: www.gbvkr.org