Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Banteay Meanchey officers set up with riot gear




Banteay Meanchey officers set up with riot gear

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Police stand in riot gear in Banteay Meanchey district. national police

Banteay Meanchey officers set up with riot gear

Banteay Meanchey provincial police on Monday equipped more than 700 officers with riot gear as a precaution against potential demonstrations before and after the July 29 national elections.

The armaments, which include an unspecified number of shields, batons, smoke grenades, tear gas, guns and light weapons, were handed to 789 officers, while strategic training on riot prevention is being conducted nationwide.

Ath Khem, Banteay Meanchey provincial police chief, said the provision of the riot gear is meant to maintain security on Election Day, not to scare voters. Opposition groups, he added, may attempt to destroy the election.

“This is the objective of the government, the Interior Ministry and National Police. We ensure security during the elections. They [the opposition] have their own tricks. It is their business and they can say what they want, but it is the police’s duty to maintain security and social order,” Khem said.

According to a local newspaper, Khem said, the court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) had disseminated information along with pictures of ordnance explosions to scare the people, as well as incite them to cause social chaos.

Separately on Monday, a total of 240 special and reinforced intervention forces in Kampong Cham province underwent training that involved the use of smoke grenades in the event of violent protests.

Neutral and Impartial Committee for Free and Fair Elections in Cambodia (Nicfec) director Sam Kuntheamy said on Tuesday that he was concerned over the provision of riot gear and demonstrations-related training in the run-up to the elections.

“We cannot see any actions that can disturb the elections. But the training seems to indicate that the situation during the elections is not good and that there are fears of potential protests or disturbances,” he said.

Cheam Channy, a former CNRP lawmaker, said the government’s move is to show it has weapons and forces to crack down on protests. “It can cause voters to worry about their safety,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • All inbound flights set to face added scrutiny

    Ministry of Health spokesperson Or Vandine said on Monday that the ministry is monitoring all inbound flights, after it was announced that only those from Malaysia and Indonesia will be temporarily cancelled from August 1. Vandine said on Monday that the two countries were identified as

  • Flights from Indonesia, Malaysia cancelled

    A Ministry of Health official has warned of the possibility of Covid-19 spreading through community transmission after the total infected cases in the Kingdom rose to 225. Ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine told reporters on Saturday that the possibility of community transmission cannot be overlooked and that

  • Man in quarantine dies of ‘overdose’

    The Ministry of Health on Thursday said a Cambodian migrant worker who died while being isolated at a quarantine centre in Tbong Khmum province’s Kroch Chhmar district may have died from syncope or overdose of tablets. In a statement, the ministry said the 21-year-old