Press "Enter" to skip to content

Cambodian Resistance figure Sam Rainsy lands in Malaysia

“Maintain the hope. We’re on the ideal path,” Rainsy said on arrival in Kuala Lumpur International Airport in a message to fans.

Asked whether he intended to come back to Cambodia he explained: “I can’t say anything. I don’t deny, I don’t conform.”

The veteran opposition figure had intended to come back to Cambodia on Saturday, Independence Day, at what Prime Minister Hun Sen characterized as an attempted coup against his rule of over three years.

However, Sam Rainsy was obstructed by boarding a Thai Airways flight to Bangkok in Paris on Thursday. He and other leaders of the banned opposition party have stated they need to return to Cambodia by crossing the land border with Thailand.

Malaysia does not have any boundary with Cambodia.

An official of Rainsy’s banned Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) in Thailand stated that nobody could be arriving on Saturday.

“We’ll be arriving as soon as you can,” Story Pon, General Secretary of the Cambodia National Rescue Party Overseas told Reuters, whining that some party officials in Thailand was harassed and followed closely by safety services.

Cambodian government spokesman Phay Siphan reported that when Sam Rainsy did return he’d confront outstanding charges against him.

“When he comes to trigger uncertainty and chaos, we’ll ruin him” he explained.

ARRESTS

Some 50 opposition activists have been detained lately.

On Sunday and Monday, Cambodia celebrates a yearly water festival.

Police armed with assault rifles lined at Cambodia’s Poipet border crossing with Thailand, at which Sam Rainsy had stated he intended to cross, photos posted on Twitter from the separate Cambodian Center for Human Rights revealed.

Rainsy, a creator of the CNRP, fled four decades ago after a conviction for criminal defamation. Also, he faces a five-year sentence in a different case. He says that the charges were politically motivated.

The 70-year-old former finance minister, that generally sports big, rimmed spectacles, was a competitor of Hun Sen since the 1990s. Also, he pledged to return home in 2015 despite threats to detain him but didn’t.

The CNRP’s chief, Kem Sokha, is under house arrest in Cambodia after being detained over two decades back and charged with treason before a 2018 election which has been condemned by Western nations as a farce.

Ahead of Sam Rainsy’s failed effort to fly to Thailand, Malaysia detained Mu Sochua, his party’s U.S.-based vice president an airport before releasing her 24 hours afterwards and two additional Cambodian opposition leaders arrested before.

“9 November is also marked in history because our battle for democracy”

Rights groups have accused Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand of detaining and coming critics of neighboring authorities, even people with United Nations refugee status.