Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Religion ministry defers decision on lawsuit against activist monk

Religion ministry defers decision on lawsuit against activist monk

Activist monk But Buntenh attends the funeral of political analyst Kem Ley. The Ministry of Cults and Religion said yesterday it had not decided whether to take action against Buntenh for allegedly insulting the King.
Activist monk But Buntenh attends the funeral of political analyst Kem Ley. The Ministry of Cults and Religion said yesterday it had not decided whether to take action against Buntenh for allegedly insulting the King. Heng Chivoan

Religion ministry defers decision on lawsuit against activist monk

The Ministry of Cults and Religion said yesterday it had deferred a decision on whether to file a complaint against activist monk But Buntenh to the monks’ council, which said it cannot act with Buntenh out of the country.

The ministry had criticised comments by Buntenh last week suggesting Cambodians, including the King, drank contaminated water – leading to speculation that Buntenh may be accused of violating a new lèse majesté law. Seng Somony, spokesman for the ministry, had said on Monday the government would wait for a decision from the monks’ council.

Supreme Patriarch Nun Ngeth condemned the remarks yesterday, but said no decision had been taken. “How can we educate him?” he said of Buntenh. “We don’t decide on anything because he is outside the framework and responsibility. ”

“The secretariat of the monk council said they were considering finding a way to make [Buntenh] come back to Cambodia,” he added.

Buntenh, who is also subject to another complaint levelled by a litigious politician, said he would remain abroad another two-and-a-half years. “No one can convince me without my will [to come back],” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • PM: Armed uprising to be destroyed immediately

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Monday said if an armed group were to rise up as announced by Sam Rainsy, the “acting president” of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), they would be destroyed immediately. Hun Sen said Rainsy’s announcement of having

  • Sihanoukville to begin road project

    The government will spend $200 million to improve Sihanoukville’s infrastructure. The eight-month project will involve the rebuilding of 34 streets with a total of more than 84km. Pal Chandara, the secretary of state and spokesman for the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, told The Post

  • Artefact is seized from American auctioneers

    Cambodian and US archaeologists on Thursday discussed the formalities and procedures of returning to Cambodia an artefact which was recently seized by US Homeland Security Investigators (HSI) from an auction house in San Francisco. On Monday, the HSI said US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE),

  • More charges as Rainsy allies warned against backing plot

    More than 20 people have been either arrested or charged with “plotting” since Sam Rainsy, the “acting president” of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), announced his return to the Kingdom next month. The majority of the arrests have come after September 20, when the