Environmental activist Alex Gonzalez-Davidson is arrested in Phnom Penh in February of last year. David Seyha
Gonzalez-Davidson's e-visa no good, Foreign Ministry says
ppp Mon, 11 April 2016
A Ministry of Foreign Affairs letter obtained by the Post yesterday states that a tourist e-visa issued for deported Mother Nature co-founder Alex Gonzalez-Davidson is null and void.
The April 8 letter from Foreign Affairs Ministry Secretary of State Long Visalo is addressed to the General Department of Immigration and stamped “urgent”.
It states that although Gonzalez-Davidson is blacklisted, the e-visa system was sluggish and failed to stop the issuing of the document on April 6.
“Inform immigration officials at Cambodia’s international border checkpoints not to allow [Gonzalez-Davidson] to enter Cambodia,” it reads.
Immigration Department director Sok Phal said all checkpoints had been informed. “I would like to tell him do not come . . . He will face arrest and be sent back immediately.”
Gonzalez-Davidson was deported in February 2015 but was charged earlier this year over his group’s anti-sand dredging activism in Koh Kong.
Am Sam Ath, of the rights group Licadho, said that refusing to allow Gonzalez-Davidson to appear at trial is a serious violation of his rights.
Previously, officials have maintained that the environmentalist can be tried in absentia.
Gonzalez-Davidson said he was not surprised at the cancellation and will continue to pursue his return, calling the situation “a very embarrassing episode for the government”.