Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Police praised for less ‘chaos’

Police praised for less ‘chaos’

Interior Minister Sar Kheng speaks yesterday in Phnom Penh during the ministry’s three-day annual meeting at which he commended the authorities on strengthening national security. Photo supplied
Interior Minister Sar Kheng speaks yesterday in Phnom Penh during the ministry’s three-day annual meeting at which he commended the authorities on strengthening national security. Photo supplied

Police praised for less ‘chaos’

Interior Minister Sar Kheng and ministry spokesman Khieu Sopheak yesterday took a yearly meeting on national crime rates as an opportunity to lavish praise on the Kingdom’s security forces for preventing protests and arresting people on what are widely considered political grounds.

Delivering opening remarks, Interior Minister Sar Kheng applauded law enforcement for creating “good conditions that make a fruitful atmosphere for economic and social development and strengthen democracy and rule of law in Cambodia” in 2015.

“National security has been strengthened,” Kheng said, noting reductions in cross-border crimes. However, he added, peace at the borders could be attributed to the “timely prevention of actions intended to make chaos in society”, an apparent veiled reference to the contentious border-demarcation politics of the Cambodia National Rescue Party.

“Demonstrations and strikes have been reduced … [and] solved peacefully,” he said.

Speaking after the minister, Sopheak said “it is a good thing” that demonstrations and strikes fell by 35 per cent from 2,634 in 2014 to 1,509 in 2015, claiming that there were only two cases of violence at demonstrations in 2015 – referring to the two opposition lawmakers brutally beaten outside the National Assembly after an anti-CNRP rally in which police did not intervene.

Sopheak went on to praise the effectiveness of police for having “arrested 11 suspects who had used violence at the Freedom Park [demonstrations] in 2014, and arrested one person for faking a border treaty, and arrested a person who incited to cause colour revolution”, referring to the internationally criticised arrests of CNRP activists, Senator Hong Sok Hour and a university student who posted on Facebook.

“And we are seeking to arrest [self-exiled opposition leader] Mr Sam Rainsy for defamation,” he added.

The ministry spokesman, without naming the opposition party, said “there is that party that considers its strategy to make a colour revolution”, before rattling off other countries that have had “colour revolutions” – naming Tunisia, Egypt and Libya – and are “not safe”.

In his earlier remarks, Sar Kheng also congratulated the authorities on the overall drop in crime, noting the increase in “all kinds of crackdowns”.

According to a report released at yesterday’s conference, in 2015, the total number of reported criminal offences fell by about 4 per cent, to 2,709. Petty theft remained more or less steady at around 1,100 cases.

Although misdemeanours were down, the number of felonies went up, from 716 to 751, which can be attributed to an increase in aggravated robberies (up to 279 from 251) and rapes (253 cases, up from 226).

“We still face challenges, including armed robbery, which is rearing its head again recently, and murder,” Kheng said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Temi tourism project approved by the CDC

    The $500.4 million Tourism, Ecological, Marine and International (Temi) tourism project has been approved by the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC), according to a notice on its Facebook page on Monday. The project is part of Chinese-owned Union City Development Group Co Ltd’s (

  • Rainsy will return at ‘favourable time’

    Opposition figure Sam Rainsy on Saturday suggested he would not return to Cambodia as he had previously promised, saying that like liberators King Father Norodom Sihanouk and Charles de Gaulle, he would only do so at a “favourable time”. “I will go back to Cambodia

  • NagaWorld casino sees net profit of more than $390M last year

    Phnom Penh’s NagaWorld casino posted a 53 per cent net profit increase last year at $390.6 million, a sum which is almost equal to the combined net profit of all Cambodian commercial banks in 2017. NagaWorld’s parent company, NagaCorp Ltd, is listed on the Hong Kong

  • US Embassy urged to stop ‘disrespecting sovereignty’

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation called on the US Embassy in Phnom Penh on Saturday to respect the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations after it called former opposition leader Kem Sokha “an innocent man” – a move deemed to be “disrespecting Cambodia’s