Border on alert against Sam Rainsy's planned return to Cambodia

Border on alert against Sam Rainsy's planned return to Cambodia

Security checkpoints in Aranyaprathet and other districts of Sa Kaeo province are on alert to prevent Cambodian opposition politicians entering Cambodia from Thailand. (Photo by Sawat Ketngam)
Security checkpoints in Aranyaprathet and other districts of Sa Kaeo province are on alert to prevent Cambodian opposition politicians entering Cambodia from Thailand. (Photo by Sawat Ketngam)

SA KAEO: Security authorities along the border with Cambodia remain on alert for political instigators despite Cambodian opposition leader Sam Rainsy being prevented from boarding a flight to Bangkok for his promised return to challenge Cambodian strongman Hun Sen.

Pol Col Ruangsak Buadaeng, the Klong Luek police station chief, said on Friday police were checking all hotels to ensure Cambodian politicians were not staying in the area. 

Roadside checkpoints were still in place in all districts of the eastern province, monitoring the movement of people to the border. Posters picturing Cambodian opposition politicians were on display, in both Thai and Khmer languages.

Cambodian authorities have requested Thai officials keep an eye out for politicians who oppose the Cambodian prime minister, as they were planning to return to Cambodia on Saturday to celebrate the country's Independence Day and rally against Hun Sen.

Cambodia gained independence from France on Nov 9, 1953.

Rainsy was barred from boarding Thai Airways International flight TG931 from Paris to Bangkok on Thursday. The airline said his ticket was not valid.

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said this week he would not let the opposition leader pass through Thailand for his planned return to Cambodia.

Rainsy is the leader and founder of the Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), which was dissolved and banned by Cambodia's Supreme Court at the Hun Sen government's behest in November 2017.

Mu Sochua, the vice president of the CNRP, was detained at Kuala Lumpur International Airport on Wednesday and later released.

Now in Kuala Lumpur, she has said she still plans to return to Cambodia, by land, despite fierce opposition from Hun Sen.


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