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Youth told demo can’t be on street

A youth demonstration planned for Sunday has been downgraded to a press conference after the government refused to lift its ban on public assemblies.

Five hundred youth intended to deliver petitions calling for an amended election law that would allow for the direct election of district, city and provincial councillors.

“We respect the ban, because our activists do not want a confrontation,” said Sok Pitour, executive director of the Youth Council of Cambodia.

Pitour said the youth will instead hold a conference on Wednesday to share a petition.

City Hall spokesman Long Dimanche yesterday said the ban is meant to ensure safety.

“We would like [the youth] to understand that riding bicycles, unicycles and three-wheeled bikes will cause traffic jams,” he said. “The local authorities will lift the ban on public assembly when … the CNRP sits in the National Assembly.”

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