Saturday, 5.4.2008: Ministry of Interior Permits Demonstration in Front of the National Assembly

Posted on 6 April 2008. Filed under: Week 554 |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 554

  • Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen wished Sam Rainsy to reach the age of one hundred years
  • Leaders of the opposition party may face legal action
  • Sam Rainsy asked 24 lawmakers to return to Phnom Penh to hold a demonstration on 6 April 2008
  • Latest information: The Ministry of Interior permitted demonstration in front of the National Assembly
  • “Phnom Penh: The Ministry of Interior decided on 4 April 2008 that the demonstration, which will be led by the Sam Rainsy on 6 April 2008, can be held in front of the new National Assembly building. However, it does not allow any march. Mr. Sam Rainsy, the president of the opposition party, has not made a final decision whether or not the Sam Rainsy Party [SRP] will also march during the demonstration. Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen wished Mr. Sam Rainy to reach the age of one hundred years, so that he will continue to compete with him on the stage of Cambodian politics.

    “A reliable source said that in the morning of 4 April 2008, Phnom Penh municipal authorities convened an urgent meeting under the direction of Mr. Kep Chuk Tema, the Phnom Penh municipal governor. The meeting aimed to watch over the demonstration of the SRP planned for 6 April 2008. District governors, chiefs of police, and chiefs of military police from all seven districts were present at the meeting.

    “Sources from the meeting said that Mr. Kep Chuk Tema told the participants to be prepared, in order to ensure security around the clock. All equipment to be used must be prepared and made available in the related districts and in the related areas, such as markets, and particularly around the headquarter of the SRP.

    “Mr. Kep Chuk Tema gave orders for the time of the demonstration, ‘Our police and the authorities of the seven districts must have enough forces available at any time to prevent illegal acts. The municipal authorities must prevent the opposition party, opportunists, or dishonest groups from doing anything that causes difficulties, insecurity, social disorder, and fears to the million of people who are living in Phnom Penh. Such problems can be caused by a handful of people.’

    “However, according to the same source, Mr. Kep Chuk Tema said that this year there is no ‘die-hard volunteer activist’ who opposes the government and the Phnom Penh municipal authorities, as it was in 1998 and 2003. For the last several days, the SRP hired moto-taxi and tuk-tuk drivers to distribute leaflets to appeal to people to participate in the demonstration on 6 April 2008. Also, Mr. Sam Rainsy turned around and sought activists in the provinces to help. Therefore the district authorities and the police must observe everywhere in Phnom Penh. If there is any mobile force from the provinces entering Phnom Penh, the authorities must stop such potential forces.

    “The Phnom Penh municipality is afraid that on 6 April 2008, if the demonstration still proceeds marching, leaders of the demonstration cannot control the demonstrators, and the demonstration could become violent, as demonstrators walking might take things from other people in their houses, shops, and markets. All demonstrators could then face legal action.

    “The municipality has arranged three lawyers to manage any cases relating to the demonstration planned for 6 April 2008.

    “Mr. Kep Chuk Tema gave an absolute order that the municipality does not allow any [marching] demonstrations, whether they are violent or non-violent, because such demonstrations are not a solution. The demonstration can not solve any problem, such as the increasing price of many goods and rice; and the government and the municipality are taking measures to deal with these problem.

    “Mr. Sam Rainsy said that the SRP told its 24 lawmakers who are in their fieldwork to return to Phnom Penh on Saturday, 5 April 2008, to participate in the demonstration scheduled on Sunday, 6 April 2008. Mr. Sam Rainsy added, ‘I will participate as well, but we have to wait for the information from the negotiators with the municipality.’ He said that SRP lawmakers, including Ho Vann, Nou Sovath, and Sok Sothy, may continue to negotiate with the municipality even in the afternoon of 5 April 2008, but he has not yet received any information about the status of the negotiations. After the municipality had stated its firm position to prohibit a [marching] demonstration, Mr. Sam Rainsy has not yet decided whether or not the demonstration would be held with a march or just at one place, or whether it would be canceled. He has to wait for information from the negotiators with the municipality. He said, ‘We cannot do anything based on the decision made by only one person. We must talk with those who are in charge and with the government.

    “Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen wished the president of the opposition party to reach the age of one hundred years .

    “Samdech Akak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen, the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, wished the president of the opposition party the great strength to compete in upcoming elections.

    “Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen sent Mr. Sam Rainsy such a wish during the inauguration of Meanchey University in Banteay Meanchey, in the morning of 4 April 2008.

    “Samdech Dekchor said, ‘I want to compete with the strong, not with the weak.’ He added, ‘I don’t want to compete with those who are not strong and who are weak.’

    “Samdech Prime Minister Hun Sen said that he wished the president of the opposition party good health up to the age of one hundred years. If he continues to be the leader of the opposition party, Samdech will continue to be leader of the ruling party. He said, ‘Provided that you continue to be the leader of the opposition party, I continue to be leader of the ruling party. There is nothing wrong if the prime minister is the same person, because the president of the opposition party is also the same.’

    “Samdech Hun Sen added that the selection of a new prime minister, to have the same one again, or to change, is up to the decision of the Cambodian people.

    “According to the latest information, the Ministry of Interior agreed to allow the SRP to conduct a demonstration in front of the new building of the National Assembly, but it did not allow any march.” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4559, 5.4.2008

    Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
    Saturday, 5 April 2008


    Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1611, 5.4.2008

    • Satellite Television Network (Dekchor DTV) Officially Inaugurated in Cambodia [3 April by Cambodia DTV Network Limited under cooperation with Cambodian National Television]
    • Sam Rainsy Struggles to Use 24 Parliamentarians’ Immunity to Demonstrate
    • Agriculture Is Still Leading in Economic Growth
    • Kuoy Ethnic Minority Community to Demonstrate, Asking to Establish a Ban on Gold Mining in Their Rovieng District [Preah Vihear]


    Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6315, 5-6.4.2008

    • National Election Committee Instructs Parties; Political Parties Must Deposit Riel 15 Million [approx. US$ 3,750]; in Case They Get at Least 3% of the Votes, They Will Be Refunded


    Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3431, 5-6.4.2008

    • Mr. Sam Rainsy Call Citizens to Vote to Change a Leader Who Is Incompetent to Prevent the Increase of Prices of Goods, and Incompetent to Prevent Corruption


    Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4559, 5.4.2008

    • Ministry of Interior Permits Demonstration in Front of the National Assembly
    • Vietnam Seizes Wood Worth Nearly US$2 Million [allegedly] Transported Illegally from Cambodia

    Have a look at last week’s editorial: “using an iron fist to administer justice”
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