A widely circulated document purported to be a draft of the government’s state of emergency legislation would allow the government to restrict citizens’ movements, and punish them with up to 10 years in jail if they obstruct emergency measures and cause public disorder.
The document, listing 11 articles over five pages, was posted to several Facebook pages on Tuesday night, including education platform Niteakosal. Voice of America reported that Justice Ministry spokesman Chin Malin had confirmed the draft’s authenticity, but Malin declined to comment on the document on Wednesday.
Prime Minister Hun Sen said on Monday that the state of emergency law, which was motivated by the Covid-19 pandemic that has seen more than 860,000 infections globally, would be sent to the Council of Ministers on Friday. At that time, the premier warned that he would have to restrict civil rights if a state of emergency is declared, but that he “doesn’t want to use this law.”