Grenade Attack Kills Sam Rainsy Party Activist

A Sam Rainsy Party activist was killed, and his wife and three children injured, in a grenade attack in Kom­pong Cham province Mon­­day, police and Sam Rain­sy Party officials said.

Sy Mov, 49, died after a gre­nade was lobbed into his house in Kang Meas district’s Oung Dong ­Daiy vil­lage, police and party officials said Tues­day.

His house also fun­ctioned as a Sam Rainsy Party office, they said.

Party officials called the attack an act of intimidation by the CPP-led government.

“All we can think of is political rea­s­ons,” said opposition party spoke­s­man Ung Bun-Ang. “It was a surprise. We thought [a resolution to the current political standoff] would be peaceful.”

But Seng Sokim, Kompong Cham provincial deputy police chief, said he did not believe the at­tack was politically motivated.

He said police were questioning one suspect, known only as Srong, at their headquarters on Tuesday.

Srong allegedly went to the victim’s house the day before the at­tack and demanded 25,000 riel ($6.25) for a baby pig that Sy Mov had agreed to purchase, Seng So­kim said. An argument ensued and Srong reportedly threatened Sy Mov, Seng Sokim ad­ded.

Ly Chakriya, chief of the monitoring unit with the human rights group Adhoc, said the attack came after a political argument between the two men.

The victim’s wife and children were only slightly injured in the at­tack, which occurred around

7 pm, Ly Chakriya said.

The Sam Rainsy Party and its Al­­li­ance of Democrats partner, Funcinpec, issued a statement on Tues­day condemning the killing, which follows a series of attacks on their supporters.

“We are quite concerned and quite worried about our safety,” Fun­cinpec spokesman Kassie Neou said by telephone.

In September, a grenade blast killed one Funcinpec official and in­jured a second in Kampot prov­ince. No arrests have been made.

Meanwhile, Sam Rainsy Party of­ficials said four of their supporters, including the party’s No 3 electoral candidate in Svay Rieng prov­ince, were transferred from their jobs in the Education Min­is­try without prior notice. They said the ministry did not give ample reas­on for the transfers.

Opposition candidate Meas Kheng was removed as a chemistry professor at a Svay Chrum district high school and was placed in the district education office, ac­cord­ing to a Sep­tem­ber ministry order.

In a separate order, dated early July, teachers Uk Suy, Hong Hean and Nheat Chham were transferred from a primary school in Koh Kong province’s Sre ­Ambel district to other unnamed schools. The orders gave no further details.

Im Sethy, Education Min­is­try CPP secretary of state, de­clined questions on Tuesday.

(Additional reporting by Lor Chandara)

 

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