Car crash eliminates remaining Cambodian figure besides Hun Sen

17 June, 2018



Cambodian police block a street near the Supreme Court during a hearing over the extended pre-trial detention of jailed Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) leader Kem Sokha, in Phnom Penh, May 7, 2018.

Cambodia’s Prince Norodom Ranariddh was seriously injured, and his wife killed, in a car crash; both SUVs involved in the crash had been speeding.

In 1997, he was overthrown as co-prime minister in a bloody coup and since his return to politics, had vowed to work with former rival and long-serving prime minister Hun Sen.

Cambodia’s Supreme Court dissolved the main opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) last year, leaving the way clear for Hun Sen to extend more than three decades of rule in an election on July 29.

Ranariddh’s Funcinpec was allocated most of the CNRP’s parliamentary seats after its dissolution, and its leader, Kem Sokha, was arrested over accusations of plotting to take power with the help of the United States.

The CNRP and Washington have both denied the charges.

“Kem Sokha’s continued detention is related to the upcoming election,” said Kem Sokha’s daughter Kem Monovithya.

“As long as there is no political solution from the top leaders of the current regime, my father’s case will remain as it is. Cambodia will surely plunge into a big crisis if Hun Sen continues to hold the next election without the release of Kem Sokha and the lift of the ban on the CNRP officials ahead of the election,”


From left to right, Kem Sokha, Pol Ham, Mu Sochua, and Eng Chhay Eang at an extraordinary congress in Phnom Penh, March 2, 2017.

[2017-05-16] Kem Sokha said he had given presentations on the upcoming elections to Cambodian communities in 13 U.S. states, as well as to U.S. lawmakers and officials of the Trump administration.

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