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CNRP letter brushed off

Daun Penh security guards and protesters from the Boeung Kak and Borei Keila communities clash in 2014.
Daun Penh security guards and protesters from the Boeung Kak and Borei Keila communities clash in 2014. Hong Menea

CNRP letter brushed off

The Interior Ministry has not yet received a letter sent last week by opposition lawmakers requesting that Phnom Penh’s district security guards be disbanded, though its spokesman, Khieu Sopheak, yesterday brushed aside the concerns.

The letter, made public on Cambodia National Rescue Party lawmaker Mu Sochua’s Facebook page on Wednesday, described the security guards as “illegal security forces” and pointed to a trend of guards violently cracking down on peaceful demonstrations.

Sopheak said the ministry had not received the letter, but maintained that the security guards were a legal entity.

“I think that if [the security guards] are illegal, the CNRP should lodge a case with the courts,” the spokesman said, adding that any violence would only have been in response to attacks by protesters.

CNRP lawmaker Son Chhay hit back yesterday, questioning what law founded the guards and threatening to summon Interior Minister Sar Kheng in the National Assembly if their letter remains unanswered.

“What principle did they take to create [the security guards]? Where does the budget come from?” Chhay asked. “Does the state pay or the district, and where does the district get the money from?”

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