Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Man held after calling government 'authoritarian' on Facebook




Man held after calling government 'authoritarian' on Facebook

San Rotha, 29, was sent to pre-trial detention at Kampong Cham Provincial Prison yesterday for calling the Cambodian government ‘authoritarian’ in a video posted online (pictured). Facebook
San Rotha, 29, was sent to pre-trial detention at Kampong Cham Provincial Prison yesterday for calling the Cambodian government ‘authoritarian’ in a video posted online (pictured). Facebook

Man held after calling government 'authoritarian' on Facebook

A 29-year-old man from Kampong Cham was sent to pre-trial detention this morning following his arrest last week – on his wedding day – for calling the Cambodian government “authoritarian” in a video clip posted to Facebook.

The arrest of San Rotha on February 8 is just the latest case of authorities clamping down on online dissent.

Hun Khei, director of the Kampong Cham Provincial Prison, said he had received San Rotha yesterday morning, but wasn’t able to specify the charges.

Plang Sophal, deputy prosecutor in Kampong Cham, declined to comment on the case and referred questions to Huot Vuthy, spokesman for the Kampong Cham Provincial Court, who couldn’t be reached. Nouv Yarath, director of the court, also declined to comment, saying he was busy in a meeting.

Mean Prom Mony, provincial investigator with Adhoc in Kampong Cham, who has been following the case, had limited information yesterday, but corroborated that Rotha had been sent to prison.

“He has been placed in pre-trial detention,” he said.

“We do not know what the charges are that the court pressed against him.”

Rotha was questioned over the weekend by a prosecutor and a judge over preliminary accusations of “public insult” and “incitement”. In his video, he urges the public and supporters of the now-banned Cambodia National Rescue Party to stand up and not be afraid of “actions and intimidations of some authoritarians”.

“If you do not stand up and unite together, we will not get loose from the devil’s hand,” he says in the clip.

MOST VIEWED

  • Vietnam: Tougher sentences for child abusers

    Several National Assembly (NA) deputies in Vietnam are calling for tougher penalties to be handed down to child abusers. They hope stricter punishments will act as a strong deterrent to prevent offenders committing further offences in the future. Extreme measures such as chemical castration were

  • Central bank to shun small US banknotes

    The National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) is considering not accepting smaller denominated US dollar banknotes – $1, $2 and $5 – from banks and microfinance institutions (MFIs) which it said are flooding its stockpile as the demand for those notes is low. While some banking insiders welcomed the move as

  • PM lauded in Covid-19 fight

    World Health Organisation (WHO) director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus sent a letter to Prime Minister Hun Sen thanking him for following the WHO’s guidance and commending Cambodia’s efforts in the fight against Covid-19. In his letter made public by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

  • Workers return, hope for salaries

    More than 600 factory workers in the capital’s Chaom Chao commune in Por Sen Chey district returned to work after the factory’s owner promised to pay their salaries in instalments until the middle of next month. On Tuesday and Wednesday, more than 600 workers gathered

  • Women detained for forcing kids to beg

    Two women were sent to Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Thursday for forcing six children to beg for money for several months at the Chhouk Meas market in Krang Thnong commune in the capital’s Sen Sok district. Phnom Penh Department of Anti-human Trafficking and

  • Vietnamese tents baffle border guards

    Kandal and Takeo provincial authorities bordering Vietnam have expressed concern after witnessing irregularities by the Vietnamese authorities, including the deployment of soldiers to erect 114 camps just 30m from the border. Takeo provincial governor Ouch Phea told The Post on Thursday that Vietnamese soldiers had erected 83