A senior member of the Human Rights Party and a brother to
its leader left the party Thursday, claiming its position to boycott an
upcoming swearing-in ceremony differed from his own views.
Kem Sokhon, the younger brother of Kem Sokha, said Friday he
was joining the Cambodian People's Party.
His defection comes one day after Prime Minister Hun Sen
warned he would use divide and conquer tactics to weaken the opposition.
In a speech on Wednesday, Hun Sen said he was going to
employ "DIFID" strategies, saying in English: "divide, isolate,
finish, integration, and destroy and development."
"I left the Human Rights Party to join the CPP, because
I'm not satisfied with the Human Rights Party joining the Sam Rainsy Party to
boycott the first National Assembly meeting and swearing-in ceremony on Sept.
24," he said. "It opposes my idea."
Kem Sokhon held the deputy secretary-general position and
was in charge of the Human Rights Party's election complaints.
The Human Rights Party won three National Assembly seats in
July's election, but it has aligned itself with the opposition Sam Rainsy Party
in a boycott of 29 lawmakers of the Sept. 24 ceremony, potentially deadlocking
Kem Sokhon has also been a member of Funcinpec, an advisor
to the party's secretary-general Nhiek Bunchhay, and a member of the Sam Rainsy
Party's steering committee.
He moved to the Human Rights Party when his brother formed
it following local commune elections in April 2007.
Kem Sokha said Friday his brother's departure would not
change the party's stance to boycott the ceremony.
His brother's leaving also "does not show internal
conflict" within the party, he said. "It is his right to choose a