Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Breaking: Royal pardon to free former opposition Senator Hong Sok Hour

Breaking: Royal pardon to free former opposition Senator Hong Sok Hour

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Hong Sok Hour is escorted outside of Cambodia’s Supreme Court in February last year. The former opposition senator has been granted a royal pardon after serving more than 800 days of a seven-year prison sentence. Pha Lina

Breaking: Royal pardon to free former opposition Senator Hong Sok Hour

King Norodom Sihamoni issued a royal pardon today to former opposition Senator Hong Sok Hour, who served more than 800 days of a seven-year prison sentence on charges of “incitement” and “forgery”.

“We, the King, order to pardon the convicted Hong Sok Hour, whom the appeal court charged on June 29, 2017 with forging documents and incitement to cause chaos,” the royal decree reads.

Sok Hour, at the time a senator from the then-Sam Rainsy Party, was arrested in August 2015 and later sentenced for allegedly posting a “fake” border treaty between Cambodia and Vietnam on Facebook. Then-opposition party leader Sam Rainsy was named as an accomplice.

The Fresh News article announcing the pardon also posted a conciliatory letter apparently written by Sok Hour to Prime Minister Hun Sen. Signed September 4, it concludes with a request for pardon.

“As a Cambodian citizen, I have only one wish, to follow the Samdech’s government policy… to ensure that the country is in national reconciliation in order to protect the territory and maintain a good relationship with neighbouring countries,” the letter reads.

“I regret that I committed a mistake against [Hun Sen’s] policy on the border issue by using incorrect documents leading to public confusion… From now on I will be more cautious not to let this problem happen again.”

Sok Hour’s wife, Kun Lum Ang, said she learned of the pardon from the media, saying “we’ve tried to compromise for a long time”.

MOST VIEWED

  • US think tank warns of China's 'ulterior motives'

    A US think tank on Tuesday warned that spreading Chinese investment in the Indo-Pacific follows a pattern of leveraging geopolitical influence at the expense of the nations receiving investment, including Cambodia. The report looks at a sample of 15 Chinese port development projects, noting that the

  • Defence Ministry denies weapons in smuggling case came from Cambodia

    After a Thai national was arrested last week for allegedly smuggling guns from Cambodia to Thailand, Cambodia's Defence Ministry has claimed the weapons seized during the arrest are not used in Cambodia, despite the fact that both types of rifle seized are commonly found in

  • More than three tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia seized in Mozambique

    A total of 3.5 tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia was seized by authorities in Mozambique late last week, according to the NGO Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). CITES' information was based on a report from the

  • Shipwreck found off coast of Koh Kong

    Royal Cambodian Navy researchers are working to identify a decades-old shipwreck found earlier this month off the coast of Koh Kong province. Divers found the 70-metre-long wreck on April 4 about a mile from Koh Chhlam island, according to Navy officials. Deputy Navy Commander Tea Sokha,