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Khmer Rouge Survivor Threatens Demonstration Against Opposition

  • Heng Reaksmey
  • VOA Khmer

Chhum Mey, who was one of only a handful of survivors at Tuol Sleng, told reporters Tuesday he would give Kem Sokha 10 days to apologize for his reported remarks.

Chhum Mey, who was one of only a handful of survivors at Tuol Sleng, told reporters Tuesday he would give Kem Sokha 10 days to apologize for his reported remarks.

PHNOM PENH - A survivor of the infamous Khmer Rouge prison of Tuol Sleng told reporters Tuesday he will hold a demonstration against senior opposition official Kem Sokha and will call for an apology for his alleged remarks about the prison.

Kem Sokha has been accused by Prime Minister Hun Sen of claiming Tuol Sleng was faked by the Vietnamese after they ousted the Khmer Rouge.

Kem Sokha has refused making such a claim and says alleged record remarks held by the ruling Cambodian People’s Party were doctored to hurt the opposition ahead of the July elections.

Chhum Mey, who was one of only a handful of survivors at Tuol Sleng, told reporters Tuesday he would give Kem Sokha 10 days to apologize for his reported remarks.

If not, Chhum Mey said, tens of thousands of people will take part in a peaceful demonstration and a march on the headquarters of the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party.

Rescue Party officials maintain that Kem Sokha’s remarks have been altered and taken out of context.

Meanwhile, VOA Khmer has obtained a draft copy of a new law put forward by the ruling party that seeks to criminalize “genocide denial.”

The Law on the Denial of Crimes Committed During the Period of Democratic Kampuchea, which is currently in draft form, carries imprisonment of six months to two years, as well as hefty fines.

The law is thought to be a response to Kem Sokha’s alleged remarks.

Not every victim supports Chhum Mey’s protest proposal.
Bou Meng, another survivor of the Khmer Rouge, said Tuesday he did not want Chhum Mey’s protest linked to the Ksaem Ksan victims’ association.

“I have declared again and again that I remain neutral and will not participate in the protest,” he said. “The association has a policy to reconcile the nation, not divide the nation.”
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