A second Sam Rainsy Party member has been arrested for his alleged connection with last year’s rocket attack on a motorcade carrying Prime Minister Hun Sen, according to human rights workers and Sam Rainsy Party officials.
The man, identified as Kang Bun Heang, was arrested Sunday in Phnom Penh, said Eva Galabru, director of the local human rights group Licadho. The suspect is reportedly being held in a military prison in central Phnom Penh, Galabru said Monday night, though she said she had not had any contact with him.
A senior military court official confirmed the arrest, Agence France-Presse reported Monday.
Kang Bun Heang traveled to Phnom Penh last week from Battambang to speak with human rights officials and media, according to Eng Chhay Eang, Sam Rainsy’s chief of cabinet.
After leaving the party’s headquarters, Kang Bun Heang disappeared, Eng Chhay Eang said Monday night. He said he could not confirm Kang Bun Heang was arrested, having only been told so by local newspapers.
Sam Rainsy Party member Mong Davuth was arrested Sept 3 by military police, also for his alleged role in last September’s rocket attack in Siem Reap, which killed a bystander and injured three others.
Though Hun Sen called it an assassination attempt, it’s unclear if the rocket was fired specifically at his vehicle. Critics of the prime minister claim he orchestrated the attack to justify a crackdown on opposition party members.
Mong Davuth is also being held in a Phnom Penh military prison, Galabru said, though she did not know what charges have been filed against either man.
After Mong Davuth’s arrest, opposition party members complained the detention was set up to discredit Sam Rainsy.
Meng Rita, the party’s deputy secretary general, said Thursday the arrest was retribution for Sam Rainsy’s criticism of the push for a Cambodian-dominated Khmer Rouge tribunal.