WASHINGTON DC —
Kem Sokha, the vice president of the Cambodia National Rescue Party, has been summoned to appear in Phnom Penh Municipal Court.
The senior opposition lawmaker will be questioned on April 8 over violent demonstrations held in Phnom Penh in January of last year, for which 11 opposition supporters are being tried, including for charges of “insurrection.”
Rights groups say the charges are greatly exaggerated and should be dropped against the suspects, including Meach Sovannara, a Rescue Party supporter who is also a US citizen.
A defense attorney says Kem Sokha should have been summoned to court via the Ministry of Justice and the National Assembly, not just court authorities, because as a lawmaker, he enjoys parliamentary immunity.
Prime Minister Hun Sen in recent days has expressed ire at Kem Sokha, who recently visited the US and said in speeches there the opposition would ultimately like to lead the country.