A military captain in Battambang province was arrested Monday on suspicion that he belongs to the rebel Cambodian Freedom Fighters, Military Region 5 commander Bun Seng said.
This latest arrest brings the total number of CFF suspects from Battambang in custody to 22, according to provincial court chief Nil Nonn.
Chea Sarun, 49, was summoned to Bun Seng’s office last week for “education,” but was arrested a few days later, Bun Seng said. He said Chea Sarun was arrested on orders from the court and not himself.
Bun Seng said the CFF is trying to establish a military base in Thailand, and has been using neighboring Battambang province as a staging point for its activities. Although authorities say they have foiled plans for an attack somewhere in Cambodia, the CFF did manage to battle security forces in Phnom Penh last November before being subdued. Despite the arrests and the seizure of dozens of weapons, Bun Seng said the CFF poses no real threat to the Cambodian government.
“They have no military strategy and they only attract robbers and other bad people,” he said. “They just want to make a disturbance like in Phnom Penh.”
(Additional reporting by Seth Meixner)