Funcinpec Says Police Inspire Fear in Pursat

Funcinpec officials Wednesday accused the military and police in Pursat province of intimidating commune candidates and cre­ating an atmosphere of fear for weeks preceding this Sunday’s commune council elections.

The allegations come after Fun­cinpec activist Las Kouk and his wife, Math Chaes, were shot and killed Sunday in Rolas village, Krakor district. Two suspects allegedly were wearing military uniforms.

“Military and police have said that if people support Funcinpec or run as candidates, they will meet the same fate as [Las Kouk and Math Chaes],” said one high-ranking Funcinpec official who spoke on condition of anonymity.

“There is a real fear and a real dan­ger among Funcinpec candidates and members in Pursat.”

Say Mongkol, Funcinpec parliamentarian and uncle of Las Kouk, accused CPP authorities Wednes­day of intimidating Fun­cin­pec members, supporters and commune election candidates in Krakor district since mid-January.

He charged that CPP officials disturbed a Jan 18 meeting of villagers in Chong Tlong village, Or Sandan commune, Krakor district.

He also claimed that CPP officials called all residents of Mout Prey village, Krakong district, to attend a Jan 23 meeting scheduled at the same time as a Funcinpec campaign event, preventing Funcinpec from reaching voters.

The next day, the CPP prevented Funcinpec from holding a cam­paign event at a Krakong district pagoda, Say Mongkol said.

He claims that on Jan 26, when Funcinpec members led by Las Kouk campaigned throughout Krakong district, CPP officials told the campaigners that if they continued to support Funcinpec, they “will be in a traffic accident during the day or will be robbed at night.”

Two days later, two assailants killed Las Kouk and Math Chaes as they were riding on a motorbike at 2 pm. They also robbed the victims of gold, the motorbike and approximately $400.

A provincial official said two suspects have been identified and that arrest warrants will be sought.

 

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