Police, Military Dispel Talk Of Brewing Cham Protest

Cambodian police and military officials have denied a report published Wednesday that claimed Cam­bodian Muslims were pre­paring to launch protests in re­sponse to the treatment of Mus­lims in southern Thailand.

The report, published by the Thai News Agency and posted on the Web site of the MCOT Public Company, quoted security officials who claimed that signs indicated that Cambodian Muslims were preparing to march on the Thai Embassy in Phnom Penh to protest the deaths of Muslims in restive southern Thailand.

At least seven people were killed in riots there Tuesday, while another 78 Muslim de­tainees, herded into army trucks after the riots, either suffocated or were crushed to death.

The report quoted a Lieu­tenant Phee Sunee, head of Cam­bodian intelligence in Banteay Meanchey province, and said  Cam­bodian officials had asked Thai police to increase security along the border.

Say Vannareth, commander of Banteay Meanchey-based Mil­itary Division 503, said Thursday there was no Muslim or terrorist activity in the province. “Nothing has happened. There is no Muslim movement along the border,” he said.

General Mol Roeup, in charge of the Cambodia’s military’s intelligence department, also denied the report. “I think it is not true…. I do not agree,” he said.

Ministry of Interior spokesman Khieu Sopheak also denied the report and of any activity among the country’s Muslim population.


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