A Cambodia National Rescue Party activist was arrested and charged by Kandal provincial court yesterday with intentional violence after a clash Monday between CNRP and Cambodian People’s Party supporters left a CPP supporter with a head injury.
A court official who asked not to be named said that Bun Sokhorn, 31, had been sent to pre-trial detention after being questioned and charged yesterday. Court officials could not be reached for comment.
Before he was taken to detention, Sokhorn told reporters that he had nothing to do with the violence in Ponhea Leu district’s Kampong Os commune.
“When the incident took place, I was at the end [of the CNRP parade] but the incident happened at the front,” he said.
Sokhorn added that, when he arrived at the site of the clash and saw the injured CPP supporter, fellow activists told him that CNRP supporters had beaten up the man because he had thrown a stone and a water bottle at them.
Chan Soveth, senior investigator for rights group Adhoc, criticised police, military police and election committee officials for failing to intervene despite being present at the scene.
He also questioned whether the suspect’s rights were protected in such a hurried legal process. Sokhorn’s lawyer, Muth Visith, declined to comment, but confirmed her client had been charged and detained.
Kampong Os commune election committee chief Ung Sarem and commune police chief Penh Sith also declined to comment. Mok Yanaro, the injured CPP activist, could not be reached.
National Election Committee secretary-general Tep Nytha yesterday said the NEC had received 239 complaints in the campaign — almost equal to the 244 complaints of the 2008 election season.