Search form

Login - Register | FOLLOW US ON

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Paging Sam Rainsy: Amid arrests, leader plans return ‘ASAP’

Paging Sam Rainsy: Amid arrests, leader plans return ‘ASAP’

Tuesday's brawl at Freedom Park and the ensuing charges against opposition members represent a turning point in the political stalemate and a worsening in relations between the two parties ahead of the one-year anniversary of the disputed election on July 28.

In the middle of this, many are asking why opposition leader Sam Rainsy remains abroad – he left for Europe last month – when such upheavals are occurring at home.

The CNRP leader lived for years outside of Cambodia before returning in the 1990s, and often travels to maintain contact with a global network of supporters. His deputy, Kem Sokha, said yesterday that he would be back from this latest excursion “soon”.

Rainsy himself has declined to comment on the violence, referring questions to Sokha.

Yesterday, he said in an email that he was “making arrangements to return”, but did not name a date. When asked again, he said “ASAP”.

It had previously been floated that Rainsy would make a grand return on July 19, the anniversary of his return from exile last year, but he told the Post last week that no such plan existed.

Political analyst Kem Ley said it was “disappointing” that Rainsy has been away for so long and not rushed back to Cambodia after the violence.

“He has just been relaxing in Paris, playing on Facebook and leaving Kem Sokha to do the work. Sam Rainsy’s group seems like more relaxed than the other,” he said. “I think that he must negotiate with Prime Minister Hun Sen, and Kem Sokha also must contact regularly with Sar Kheng for political negotiations.”

Ou Virak, chairman of the Cambodian Center for Human Rights, said it’s Rainsy’s choice, but in times like these, leadership is needed.

“If I were him, I would come back immediately.”

1

Comments

Please, login or register to post a comment
Gelimo's picture

“If I were him, I would come back immediately”
But you are not him, very far from him, and nobody will follow you

It must be very simple minded to have this kind of thought.
A Leader, gather around a Project of Society, Values and Strategy, to conduct people to prosperity and better life conditions.

Those who would give lessons to Mr. Sam Rainsy, should stand facing the people to dictate their advice, which is not, because they lack enought political reflection by the situation.
I'm not sure they would be followed.

The presence in Europe is necessary and appropriate in terms of Strategy, Finance and Political support.
It's mediocre, to not understand that

Latest Video

Explore the durian and rubber farms of Kampong Cham

Take a drive north of Kampong Cham, past the dirt roads and the dense greenery.

Kem Sokha talks politics, power and Hun Sen

Kem Sokha, leader of the Cambodia National Rescue Party, sat down with The Post’s Alex Willemyns and Mech Dara to discuss his supporters’ initial disappointment with this year’s

NEC officials tally votes during a recount last week in Phnom Penh.

Cambodia’s National Election Committee last week rejected 33 of 61 complaints filed over the conduct of June 4’s commune election, according to a s

People search for their names on the voter lists at a polling station in Kampong Cham’s Veal Vong commune earlier this month.

Four years ago, when the opposition snatched Kampong Cham away from the ruling party in 2013 national elections, it hinted at a deeper shift taking