Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - NEC, CPP hit back at HRW over poll report

NEC, CPP hit back at HRW over poll report

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
PM Hun Sen attends the CPP's rally last day this morning. Heng Chivoan

NEC, CPP hit back at HRW over poll report

The National Election Committee (NEC) and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) reacted strongly on Thursday to a statement from Human Rights Watch (HRW) calling the July 29 general election “not genuine”.

The NEC called the statement politically motivated while a CPP leader said the watchdog had no right to determine the fate of the Kingdom’s people, and that its comment was an attack on his party.

In the four-page document released on Thursday, HRW said Cambodians were being denied the right to chose their government, citing that the European Union (EU), United States and Japan have all announced that they will not send observers.

The report called into question the “arbitrary dissolution of the main opposition party, the Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), surveillance, intimidation, detention and politically motivated prosecution of key opposition members,” adding that it was concerned over the crackdown on independent media, and laws restricting free speech.

Also questioned were the independence of the NEC, and the use of military and police officials in the CPP’s campaign.

HRW Asia director Brad Adams said in the statement: “The Cambodian government over the past year has systematically cracked down on independent and opposition voices to ensure that the ruling party faces no obstacles to total political control.”

‘Ill intentions’

NEC deputy secretary-general Som Sorida said the document was “politically motivated”. “In fact, the report is politically motivated as the NEC is a law enforcement institution.”

CPP spokesman Sok Eysan said the international human rights organisation has no right to evaluate the election in Cambodia. He said the body has “ill-intentions” toward Cambodia and the CPP in particular.

“There will be no foreign evaluation to determine the fate of the Cambodian people. Only Cambodians can determine the fate of the Kingdom.

“The HRW has ill intentions toward the CPP because his [Brad Adams’] brain determines that the CPP is a communist party, and close with the Communist Party of China. That is why it is not happy,” Eysan said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Purging Sihanoukville’s past with a new masterplan

    Amid illicit activities, haphazard development and abandoned projects, the coastal city of Sihanouk province needs a reset to move forward. A new masterplan might be the answer to shake off its seemingly mucky image to become the Shenzhen of the south Gun toting, shootouts, police

  • Chinese may be first in tourism revival: PM

    Cambodia's tourism industry is gearing up to roll out the red carpet for Chinese travellers after Prime Minister Hun Sen on September 17 indicated that the Kingdom could soon throw open its doors to international holidaymakers vaccinated against Covid-19 – starting with guests from China. Cambodia Chinese

  • Four-pillar approach in reopening of tourism: PM

    Cambodia is drawing up a four-strategy approach to promptly restore domestic and international tourism activity and put the industry on a transition pathway to a sustainable and inclusive model that is resistant to future crises, according to Prime Minister Hun Sen. The prime minister made

  • Airline says ready for green light to reopen international tourism

    Sky Angkor Airline Co Ltd on September 21 said it is ready to transport South Korean and Chinese tourists to the Kingdom once the Cambodian government makes good on plans to reopen its borders to vaccinated travellers. The Siem Reap-based airline made the remark during a

  • Tourism concerns laid bare

    To ensure the success of plans to reopen the tourism market for international visitors, Cambodia must pay utmost attention to two primary determinants – the ongoing paradigm shift in domestic tourism services towards the ‘new normal’, and the factors influencing choices of destinations among foreign holidaymakers.

  • Cambodian bride ‘badly treated, held captive’ by Chinese man seeks help

    A Cambodian woman who travelled to China to marry a Chinese man there was “badly treated” by her husband’s family and then had to be rescued and will be returned to Cambodia to ensure her safety. The rescue operation came about after the 25-year-old