Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sovannara not allowed to travel

Sovannara not allowed to travel

Opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party activist Meach Sovannara is escorted into the Supreme Court in Phnom Penh last week ahead of his hearing.
Opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party activist Meach Sovannara is escorted into the Supreme Court in Phnom Penh last week ahead of his hearing. Heng Chivoan

Sovannara not allowed to travel

The Supreme Court opted to uphold a lower court’s verdict yesterday, ruling that Meach Sovannara, the jailed information chief of the Cambodian National Rescue Party, cannot leave Cambodia to seek medical treatment.

Sovannara, who holds Cambodian and US citizenship, was sued for his participation in a 2014 demonstration at Freedom Park where security forces and demonstrators clashed.

On July 20, 2015, the Phnom Penh Municipal Court sentenced him to 20 years in prison for “leading an insurrection”. He had appealed to the Supreme Court to allow him to travel abroad for a medical check-up for injuries sustained in a car accident last year.

But Kim Sathavy, the presiding judge, refused the request, saying that the lower court’s decision to ensure that Sovannara remains in Cambodia was the correct one.

After the verdict, Sovannara’s attorney, Chuong Choungy, said he recognised that the Supreme Court’s decision is final, but said he will discuss ways to file a further complaint with his client.

Sovannara was jailed at a time of heightened tensions between the ruling and opposition parties in a case widely considered to be politically motivated.

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia’s image problem

    In opening remarks at a recent event, Secretary of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Luy David said information can be a double-edged sword. He told a European Institute of Asian Studies (EIAS) briefing seminar that the media has unfairly presented

  • PM Hun Sen says dangers averted

    Delivering a campaign speech from his home via Facebook Live on Thursday, caretaker Prime Minister Hun Sen said his Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) had carried the country through danger in its latest mandate. He was specifically referring to the threat of a “colour revolution”

  • Bumpy road for local ride apps

    Ride-hailing services seem to have grown into a dominant player in the capital’s transportation sector. Relatively unknown and little used in the Kingdom at the beginning of this year, services like PassApp, Grab and ExNet are now commonplace on Phnom Penh streets. However, the

  • Hun Sen lays out party’s platform

    Caretaker Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday credited liberating Cambodia from the Khmer Rouge as among the reasons why people will vote for his ruling Cambodian People Party (CPP) in the July 29 national elections. Hun Sen, who has held the reins of power in Cambodia