City Hall Bans Kem Ley Mourners From Marching

Members of the public will not be allowed to march on foot during Sunday’s funeral procession for political analyst Kem Ley, while a City Hall spokesman yesterday warned mourners against politicizing the event.

The body of the slain government critic will leave Phnom Penh’s Wat Chas pagoda at 7 a.m. before being driven down Monivong Boulevard and National Road 3 en route to his home province of Takeo.

However, City Hall and the funeral committee for Kem Ley came to an agreement on Thursday that those joining the procession must do so in cars, tuk-tuks or on motorbikes, according to a statement from the committee.

City Hall spokesman Mean Chanyada confirmed that authorities would not allow anyone to march on foot and cautioned mourners against using the event for political ends.

“People will not be allowed to march at all,” Mr. Chanyada said. “During the procession, people will not be allowed to have any political banners and will not be allowed to chant things about politics. This is a funeral. Don’t use the family of the dead to exploit.”

Tim Malay, one of the funeral organizers, said the ban would be tough to implement.

“It will be difficult for us to stop them…. It’s up to [the public],” Mr. Malay said.

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