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Jailed publisher writes Sok An letter of apology

Jailed publisher writes Sok An letter of apology

IMPRISONED opposition newspaper publisher Hang Chakra has written a letter of apology to Deputy Prime Minister Sok An, officials said.
Minister of Information and government spokesman Khieu Kanharith said he has delivered it to the deputy prime minister.

But since Hang Chakra, 55, has already been convicted of defamation, the letter alone doesn't guarantee the journalist's release, Khieu Kanharith said. "I delivered a letter to Excellency Sok An," he said. "How he will decide depends on him because he is the plaintiff."

Journalists who have been lobbying on Hang Chakra's behalf said they hoped the move would facilitate his release. "I hope he will be allowed to leave prison," said Touch Nora, president of the Cambodia Watch of Journalists Association.

Hang Chakra was convicted of defamation and publishing false information for a series of articles alleging corruption against officials under Sok An. He was sentenced to one year in prison and fined 9 million riels (US$2,187). The Court of Appeal rejected his case on August 11.

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