Police ‘ready to arrest’ Rainsy as CNRP arrive in Thailand
PHNOM PENH (The Phnom Penh Post/ANN) - Police and military officials confirmed their readiness to enforce the courts’ warrants to arrest Sam Rainsy, the “acting president” of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), if he returns to the Kingdom as promised.
Police and military officials confirmed their readiness to enforce
the courts’ warrants to arrest Sam Rainsy, the “acting president” of the
Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), if he
returns to the Kingdom as promised.
They said some CNRP leaders have arrived in Thailand while some were
in other Asian countries. Arrests would be made whenever they crossed
the border into Cambodia.
Rainsy said in an interview with Radio Free Asia (RFA) on Friday night that plans for his return would not be changed.
He said he would lead his supporters on foot into Cambodia on
November 9, the 66th anniversary of Cambodia’s independence, despite the
authorities announcing that they were ready to take all legal measures
“Let’s say there are 10 per cent of two million people, which
is 200,000 people. If 200,000 people gather to enter Cambodia, and we
join hands with the local citizens, then [Prime Minister] Hun Sen will
be in an uncontrolled state,” Rainsy claimed.
CNRP vice-president Mu Sochua said on her Facebook page that she and other CNRP leaders had arrived in Thailand on Saturday.
“The prisoners of the Hun Sen regime are gathering and are ready to return to Cambodia on November 9,” she claimed.
Ministry of Interior spokesman Khieu Sopheak said the authorities
were ready to implement the courts’ warrants to arrest Rainsy and other
CNRP leaders if they entered Cambodia.
“They are strengthening their activities and they may do it [enter
Cambodia]. If they do it, we will also really do it [arrest them].
“Our task is to implement what we have set out. In all circumstances
and at any cost, we have to protect the Constitution, the peace of our
country and the government.
“The most important thing is to arrest those named in the warrants
who are attempting to topple the government and create chaos in the
country. By law, we are obligated to enforce the law and protect the
peace,” he said.
Sopheak expressed hope that the Thai police would cooperate in arresting the CNRP leaders to prevent unrest.
“We have the right [to open or close border checkpoints]. We have not
decided yet. We will have to check the real situation,” he said.
National Police spokesman Chhay Kim Khoeun reiterated the
authorities’ readiness to The Post on Sunday but declined to provide
details, citing confidentiality.
Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) spokesman Sok Eysan mocked the idea
that Rainsy’s supporters would enter Cambodia in such large numbers. He
said if they did, they would die in a stampede and some would tread on
Eysan said the Thai authorities would hand Rainsy over to the
Cambodian authorities before he had set foot in the Kingdom because the
two countries collaborated closely.
“The convict [Rainsy] said two million people will arrive from
Thailand with him like a tsunami. If it was thunderous like a tsunami,
they would be killed in a stampede.
“That means the convict won’t dare to enter Cambodia. Even people who
haven’t yet crossed the border, people who are just near the border,
some of them step on landmines and are killed in explosions.
“If the convict boarded an aeroplane to Thailand, he would be
arrested and put into a sack and sent back to Phnom Penh,” he said.
Brigadier General Ek Sam Oun, the deputy Infantry Unit commander and
the commander of Military Region 5, said his forces were also ready to
arrest anyone attempting to orchestrate a coup to topple the government.
“This is the army’s work and we are ready. My forces don’t have any
problems . . . we are ready to execute the warrants issued by the
courts,” he stressed.