In Activists’ Arrests, Some See Scared Gov’t, CPP Says It Has No Fear

A recent wave of arrests of youth activists show the government’s fear of outspoken dissidents, and the potential for small demonstrations to become large-scale protests, political activists and analysts say, while a ruling party official denied any such fear yet suggested that the CPP intended to put out a “fire” before it spread.

At least nine activists affiliated with three different youth advocacy groups protesting for environmental causes and the release of jailed government critic Rong Chhun have been charged and imprisoned in the last month, with a few others detained and then released.

While a spokesperson for the ruling CPP on Monday alleged that the dissolved main opposition CNRP was behind the demonstrations, one CNRP leader said the party had drawn inspiration from the young activists.

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