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No approval yet for CNRP rally

The Cambodia National Rescue Party says it expects thousands of people to attend a ceremony at Freedom Park on Sunday to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Paris Peace Agreement, though City Hall says it has yet to approve the event.

In a letter sent to City Governor Pa Socheatvong yesterday, the CNRP called on the governor to provide security for the ceremony on October 23.

CNRP lawmaker Ho Vann said the party would meet with municipal officials today to discuss their plans.

Reached yesterday, municipal spokesman Mean Chanyada said no decision on the rally had yet been made. Chanyada said the CNRP needed to abide by the Law on Peaceful Demonstration’s requirement that groups planning gatherings notify authorities of the number of attendees.

However, Vann said it was unrealistic to suggest a number other than “many thousands”, given they could not limit attendees. “If the public participates, who can count?” Vann said.

As political tension has risen in recent months, authorities have taken a tough line on CNRP demonstrations, which they’ve labelled a threat to stability.

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