Cambodia

After Three Years, Mu Sochua’s Parliamentary Immunity Restored

Opposition lawmaker Mu Sochua, who has appealed for three years after losing a defamation suit to Prime Minister Hun Sen.

Opposition lawmaker Mu Sochua in front of Phnom Penh airport, file photo. Opposition lawmaker Mu Sochua in front of Phnom Penh airport, file photo.
x
Opposition lawmaker Mu Sochua in front of Phnom Penh airport, file photo.
Opposition lawmaker Mu Sochua in front of Phnom Penh airport, file photo.
Heng ReaksmeyVOA Khmer
PHNOM PENH - The Court of Appeals on Friday granted parliamentary immunity returned to opposition lawmaker Mu Sochua, who has appealed for three years after losing a defamation suit to Prime Minister Hun Sen.

Mu Sochua first sued the premier in 2009 over election comments he made during the previous year’s election campaign that she claimed were derogatory.

Hun Sen followed suit, accusing her of defamation for the accusations, and the National Assembly stripped Mu Sochua of her immunity so that she could face the suit in court. Mu Sochua did not win her case. Hun Sen won his.

But the National Assembly did not return her immunity immediately.

“Sometimes the court provides justice and sometimes not,” Mu Sochua told reporters Friday, saying Cambodia’s judiciary needs “help.”

Cambodian parliamentarians are provided immunity from court prosecution by the constitution, as a way to protect them and allow them to speak freely in debates. That immunity can be voted away by members of the National Assembly, however.

Critics say the ruling Cambodian People’s Party, which has 90 of 123 seats, has used its majority to strip immunity from opposition lawmakers and expose them to court action. Other opposition officials, including opposition leader Sam Rainsy, have had their immunity revoked in the past.

Rong Chhun, president of the Independent Teacher’s Association, a pro-opposition union, said the court’s remain politically biased.

“Because Mu Sochua is a member of the opposition party, the court took three years to provide her with her immunity,” he said. “If Mu Sochua were a member of the ruling party, maybe within three days the court would provide her immunity.”
Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Hunting for Wild Honey in Cambodia's Forestsi
X
17 December 2014
Cambodia is thought to produce the best wild honey in Southeast Asia, mainly due to its climate and topography. Most of it is harvested informally and sold cheaply at local village markets. Now, one company is helping some of the country's poorest people by employing them to hunt for honey, then selling it commercially. (AP, Koh Kong)

English with Mani & Mori

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
You've Got To Be Kidding (Movie: Bedtime Stories)i
X
01 December 2014
You can say, "What? You lost your passport? So, you're stranded in a foreign country, where you don't speak the language and you don't know anyone? You've got to be kidding me, right?" What does it mean? Watch here. For more videos - go to www.youtube.com/KhmerSpecialEnglish. To contact Mani & Mori - write to them at maniandmori@gmail.com.
Video

Video You've Got To Be Kidding (Movie: Bedtime Stories)

You can say, "What? You lost your passport? So, you're stranded in a foreign country, where you don't speak the language and you don't know anyone? You've got to be kidding me, right?" What does it mean? Watch here. For more videos - go to youtube.com/KhmerSpecialEnglish.
Video

Video All Thumbs (Movie: Minority Report)

You can say, "I was 'all thumbs' this morning when trying to tie this tie - I kept making mistakes and just couldn't figure a way to pull it together." What does it mean? Watch here.
See more >>>