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Ou Chanrath calls on RFA to make apology

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Ou Chanrath spoke with reporters in August 2018. Heng Chivoan

Ou Chanrath calls on RFA to make apology

Former Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) lawmaker Ou Chanrath claimed that Radio Free Asia (RFA) disseminated “baseless information” against him, and called on the radio’s journalists to be “professional and neutral”.

He was responding to an RFA interview with political analyst Kim Sok on Thursday, during which Sok allegedly made defamatory accusations against Chanrath, which he said did “not reflect his true stance and severely affects his dignity”.

At the time of going to press, The Post was unable to obtain the full details of Sok’s alleged accusation against Chanrath.

Ou Chanrath said: “As a public news outlet, [it] should not broadcast wrong things as it may affect the dignity and stance of a person. It also affects the professionalism, dignity, value and morality of the person who made such accusations.

“It’s a shame that some people would use words that are not appropriate in the public sphere.”

He said that RFA’s accusation had resulted in a large number of people insulting him and casting doubt over his integrity.

“It would be difficult to restore my dignity . . . but what’s more important is that I am not changing,” said Chanrath.

He urged RFA to make the adjustments “to avoid confusion and misinformation” with the public, saying they should take responsibility and issue an apology.

“I want them to correct what they said about me to the public, but I won’t force them to do it. It is up to their morality and dignity,” he said, adding that he would like to see the network behaving as “neutral and professional journalists”.

On Thursday, the National Assembly unanimously approved an amendment to Article 45 of the Law on Political Parties which could pave the way for the 118 banned senior CNRP leaders to return to the political stage.

Following the move, the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party’s (CNRP) newly appointed acting leader, Sam Rainsy, warned that the banned politicians who took advantage of the amendment would be “directly or indirectly serving government policy”.

However, Chanrath has welcomed the move to amend Article 45.

“I think that it is a good step. I want to welcome this positive step taken by the National Assembly,” he said recently.