Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sokha prepares for Pchum Benh, despite treason trial woes

Sokha prepares for Pchum Benh, despite treason trial woes

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Kem Sokha leaves the Phnom Penh Municipal Court in January. Hong Menea

Sokha prepares for Pchum Benh, despite treason trial woes

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court on September 7 questioned former opposition leader Kem Sokha, focusing on two pieces of evidence, the first of which were videos and images of violent demonstrations on Veng Sreng Street in Phnom Penh. The second is video of violent protests on Dragon Bridge near Wat Phnom.

Sokha, former leader of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), is charged with conspiring with foreign powers to overthrow the elected government.

Municipal court spokesman Plang Sophal told The Post after the hearing that the videos discussed during this latest hearing and those shown previously were different and did not overlap.

Yim Sinorn, a close associate of Sokha who attended the hearing, contradicted Phal’s comment, saying the 55th hearing was nothing new. He said the prosecution continued to cross-examine Sokha about the videos’ content.

Sinorn noted that the line of questioning related to the two videos did not correspond to accusations of conspiring with foreign powers. In addition, Sokha has repeatedly stated in court that he was not responsible for any demonstrations held outside of Freedom Park in the capital.

“Regardless of speculation about the footage shown in court, it is unknown who the leaders of the demonstrations were. These protests did not involve Kem Sokha,” he said.

Sokha’s next hearing is scheduled for September 14.

After leaving the courtroom, Sokha took to social media extending his thanks to supporters and noting that he will celebrate the upcoming Pchum Ben Festival.

“I thank the Cambodian people, both inside and outsides of the country, as well as friends from the international community who have called for my release after the injustices of the last five years,” he wrote.

“As a believer in Buddhism, I adhere to the principle of non-violence. As a respecter of Khmer traditions and customs, I try to always do good deeds and be aware of merits and sins. I am grateful to my motherland of Cambodia, my ancestors and relatives. Although I am not completely free, next week I will celebrate the Pchum Ben Festival with my compatriots at several pagodas,” added the post.

MOST VIEWED

  • South Korea’s first lady brings hope to ill boy

    South Korea’s first lady Kim Keon-hee – wife of current president of the Republic of Korea, Yoon Suk Yeol – met with a 14-year-boy with congenital heart disease during her trip to the Kingdom for the ASEAN Summit. After their meeting it was announced that the

  • Hun Sen gets Covid, shuns G20, APEC summits

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said he has tested positive for Covid-19 in Indonesia, where he is slated to attend the G20 summit in his capacity of the ASEAN chair. In a social media post addressing the Cambodian public, he said: “Before leaving Cambodia, I always

  • Moody’s sets outlook rating to ‘negative’ for Cambodia

    US global rating agency Moody’s Investors Service Inc on November 15 announced that it downgraded Cambodia’s outlook from “stable” to “negative” and maintained its B2 local and foreign currency issuer ratings. “The negative outlook reflects a deteriorating external position as illustrated by the severe

  • Hun Sen’s Covid infection caused by ‘weakened antibody’ after summit

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said exhaustion from heavy workload before and during the recent ASEAN Summit may have led to him contracting Covid-19 due to his weakened immune system, while rejecting speculations that the infection was caused by leaders of some countries who did not

  • Korean first lady paves way for ill boy’s surgery

    A 14-year-old boy with congenital heart disease who was lucky enough to meet with South Korean first lady Kim Keon-hee may get the chance of a lifetime and receive surgery and treatment at Asan Medical Center in Seoul, South Korea. After seeing his plight, many

  • Kingdom’s rice crowned world’s No1

    Cambodia’s Phka Rumduol jasmine variety has been crowned the World’s Best Rice for the fifth time at the TRT (The Rice Trader) World Rice Conference in Phuket, Thailand on November 17, according to leaders of the Kingdom’s apex rice industry body. Phka Rumduol