Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Australian politician slams gov’t spokesman



Australian politician slams gov’t spokesman

Khmer-Australian politician Hong Lim, who yesterday slammed government spokesman Phay Siphan’s “absurd, ridiculous and stupid” actions. Parliament of Victoria
Khmer-Australian politician Hong Lim, who yesterday slammed government spokesman Phay Siphan’s “absurd, ridiculous and stupid” actions. Parliament of Victoria

Australian politician slams gov’t spokesman

Khmer-Australian politician Hong Lim has responded with a stinging broadside against government spokesman Phay Siphan’s “absurd, ridiculous and stupid” antics, after the Cambodian official demanded he apologise for criticising the Kingdom’s regime in the wake of the murder of political analyst Kem Ley.

In an email yesterday, Lim, a state MP for the Labor Party in Victoria, took aim at Siphan for insulting his parents, who he said had died under the Khmer Rouge, characterising the spokesman’s remarks as “beneath contempt” and calling out the government’s “self-important patronizing, condescending and insulting attitude”.

“What kind of government would stoop this low?” Lim said.

The war of words erupted after Lim called Cambodia’s regime a “beast” in an interview about Ley’s killing, which many believe was politically motivated. Siphan, who plans to visit the Australian Embassy today to continue his push for an apology, said the remarks were an “insult” to the government, monarchy and Cambodian people.

But Lim, who was born in Cambodia and emigrated to Australia, said Siphan had distorted his remarks for the “government’s miserable political gain”, which he slammed as an act of cowardice, “disrespectful” to Ley and a sign the government had “crossed the line of human decency”.

“In classic vintage Phay Siphan’s style... [he is] dragging the Monarchy and the good people of Cambodia into his twisted, sick and sinister game,” said Lim.

But contacted yesterday, Siphan, who says pro-government supporters will also deliver a petition to the Australian Embassy calling for an apology, held firm, calling Lim a “coward” for not “taking responsibility”.

Reached yesterday, the Australian Embassy says it was aware a group wanted to deliver a petition today.

“The Australian Government will consider a response once the content of the petition has been reviewed,” a spokesperson said, via email.

MOST VIEWED

  • Phnom Penh unveils rules for post-lockdown transition

    The Phnom Penh Municipal Administration issued a set of detailed guidelines for the seven days to May 12 after the capital emerges from lockdown at the onset of May 6. In the 14-page document signed by municipal governor Khuong Sreng released on the evening of May 5, the

  • SBI LY HOUR Bank Launches Cross Border Money Transfer Service between Cambodia and Vietnam on RippleNet, utilizing DLT

    SBI LY HOUR Bank Plc and Hanoi-based Tien Phong Commercial Joint Stock Bank (TPBank) on Friday launched the first Cambodia-Vietnam money transfer service in real currency via RippleNet, provided by SBI Ripple Asia Co Ltd to provide safe, fast and convenient services. SBI LY HOUR

  • Gov’t issues guidelines as lockdown nears end

    The government has issued a five-page set of instructions to be enforced when the three-week lockdown of Phnom Penh and adjacent Takmao town in Kandal province ends on May 6. According to an announcement signed by Prime Minister Hun Sen on May 4, the instructions cover a

  • Cambodia ready to exit LDC status

    Cambodia is well-prepared to minimise economic risks when it graduates from its Least Developed Countries status, according to a senior official at the Ministry of Commerce on May 7. Four LDCs – Cambodia, Laos, Bangladesh and Nepal – met at a virtual workshop last week to explore potential

  • Tottenham Hotspur to wear ISF Cambodia logo on jerseys in match against Sheffield United

    Last year, the Indochina Starfish Foundation (ISF) – an NGO providing education to underprivileged children in Cambodia – made global headlines with its “socially distanced” football initiative. This year, a world-class football club – Tottenham Hotspur FC – will wear special edition jerseys to show their support for ISF

  • Nine US franchises eye Cambodia debut

    Nine famous US franchising companies are looking for business opportunities and expansion into Cambodia to build a footstep for a strong foundation in Southeast Asia. The US embassy in Phnom Penh, in partnership with the US Foreign Commercial Service and with support from the American