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Free speech: Government silences its critics: NGOs

Free speech
THE election monitor Comfrel yesterday held an event marking the United Nations International Day of Democracy, during which civil society representatives criticised government actions that they said were impinging on free speech.

Sok Sam Oeun, executive director of the legal aid NGO Cambodian Defenders Project, said the criminal code passed by the National Assembly last year had enabled the court system to be used “to silence individuals that criticise the government”.

But Tith Sothea, spokesman for the Press and Quick Reaction Unit at the Council of Ministers, said the criticism was a thinly veiled attempt on the part of the groups to secure more donor funding.

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