Battle lines drawn in fight for Cambodian, local democracy

Protests assail Hun Sen regime.

For the second time in as many months, Cambodian Americans took to the streets of Lowell to protest the regime of Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen, as well as to denounce his transfer of power to his eldest son, Hun Manet, effective Aug. 22.

On Sunday, protestors gathered in Pailin Park — the Cambodian community’s name for Roberto Clemente Park – as speaker after speaker, including City Councilor Vesna Nuon, City Council candidates Susie Chhoun and Justin Ford, former City Councilor Rithy Uong and state Rep. Vanna Howard, drew firm battle lines in the fight for democracy in their ancestral and American homes.

“Cambodia is a dictatorship like North Korea,” Ford said. “We must speak up in solidarity for our community. I will not be silent… Stand up to dictators.”

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