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Court Detains Opposition Activist

Svay Rieng provincial court on Thursday ruled to detain an opposition party activist after he allegedly cut the leaves from the palm tree of a neighbor in an argument over land.

Kong An, 59, a member of Svay Teap’s district council and supporter of the opposition Sam Rainsy Party, was charged with destruction of property and put into custody.

A complaint was filed against him in May by Prak Sarom, who is the sister-in-law of provincial judge Pang Samon, the same judge who ordered the detention Thursday.

Pang Samon later declined to comment. Park Sarom could not be reached for comment.

Meas Kheng, deputy provincial head of the Sam Rainsy Party in Svay Rieng, said the jailing was unfair, considering an opposition complaint that a member had been held at gunpoint by a district policeman had been dismissed.