Cambodia releases alleged opposition leader plot video
- 3 Sep 2017 at 15:09
- WRITER: REUTERS
Opposition leader of the Cambodia National Rescue Party Kem Sokha prays during a Buddhist ceremony to mark the 20th anniversary of the attack on anti-government protesters in 1997, in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, on March 30, 2017, (AP file photo)
Cambodia's government on Sunday released a video which it said showed arrested opposition leader Kem Sokha talking about conspiring against the administration with US support.
Kem Sokha was arrested on Sunday and Prime Minister Hun Sen's government said he was accused of treason for plotting with foreign powers.
The government released the video on its Facebook page and said it had been recorded in Australia by the private Cambodia Broadcasting Network. It did not say when.
It appeared to show Kem Sokha speaking to supporters in the Khmer language and discussing a political strategy with US support rather than an immediate plot to oust the government.
Kem Sokha's opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) made no immediate comment on the video and either its veracity or content. These could not be independently verified.
Kem Sokha was heard comparing the situation in Cambodia to that in the former Yugoslavia in 2000, when protests helped to bring down former leader Slobodan Milosevic.
"Before changing the top level, we need to uproot the lower one... The USA, which has assisted me, has asked me to take the model from Yugoslavia, Serbia, where they were able to change the dictator Milosevic," he appears to say.
"I do not do anything at my own will. I have experts, university professors in Washington DC, Montreal, Canada hired by the Americans in order to advise me on the strategy to change the leaders. And if I follow such a tactic and strategy and if I could not win, I do not know what else to do."
The government has recently increased its rhetoric against the United States and last month ordered the expulsion of the US State Department-funded National Democratic Institute pro-democracy group.
The excerpt of Kem Sokha's speech used as evidence starts about here in part 2: CBN Khmer Hero Kem Sokha https://t.co/YN658EthNz via—(@Preah_Ream) September 3, 2017
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