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New party announced, date set for registration

NEC Deputy President Nuth Sokhom speaks at a meeting in Phnom Penh on Wednesday.
NEC Deputy President Nuth Sokhom speaks at a meeting in Phnom Penh on Wednesday. Heng Chivoan

New party announced, date set for registration

Political parties will have 15 days to register for July’s national elections beginning on Monday next week, while a new party founded by the son of a veteran opposition politician announced on Wednesday it will compete.

Nuth Sokhom, deputy president of the National Election Committee, said on Wednesday that 37 parties are currently registered with the Ministry of Interior, although it is unclear how many will actually run.

The Human Rights Party and Candelight Party, predecessors to the now-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party, have said they will boycott the elections.

On Wednesday, Kong Monika, the son of opposition politician Kong Korm, announced the formation of the Khmer Will Party (KWP), which is now registered with the ministry.

His father and two brothers were banned from politics for five years in the Supreme Court decision to dissolve the CNRP.

“We, the young intellectuals, don’t want to see the will of the people who gave trust in the 2013 and 2017 elections stand still or back down,” he said.

Meanwhile, Pich Sros, president of the Cambodian Youth Party, which first filed the complaint to dissolve the CNRP, said his party members have been subject to threats and discrimination at the local level.

“If the behaviour of commune chiefs of the CPP are still like this, I regret about the upcoming election,” he said.

Sam Inn, secretary-general of the Grassroots Democracy Party, said that while 2017 was a “big step back” for democracy, the party still plans to participate in the elections.

Additional reporting by Andrew Nachemson

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