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Facing arrest, Cambodia's Sam Rainsy will get home come what may

Facing arrest, Cambodia's Sam Rainsy will get home come what may”

But the Thai prime minister said the banned politician will not be allowed to enter his country.

"This may be the last time you see me alive or as a free man", he said.

Hun Sen's government deployed troops along its borders in response to Rainsy's announcement of his planned return.

Sam Rainsy delivers a speech to members of the Cambodia National Rescue Party at a hotel in metro Manila, Philippines.

In this November 4, 2019, photo, Cambodian opposition politician Sam Rainsy speaks during an interview in front of the European Parliament in Brussels.

As quoted by Reuters, opposition leader Sam Rainsy has been exiled and living in France for four years, following accusations against him in a defamation case for which he paid US$1 million.

However, Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha on Wednesday said he could not allow interference into the internal affairs of Cambodia, a fellow member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

The same late 2017 crackdown that shut down his party and resulted in its lawmakers tossed out of Parliament also closed virtually all critical media outlets and saw the opposition party's co-founder, Kem Sokha, arrested on a charge of treason for having links with an American democracy promotion organization. "We will not interfere in another country and will not allow an anti-government group to use Thailand for its movement".

"I have ordered this, so he probably won't get in".

The exiled Mu Sochua, according to the Reuters report on October 24, was denied access into Thailand when she wanted to enter Cambodia by crossing the border between the two countries.

The former finance minister is also unlikely to be allowed to enter Thailand, which recently turned away the vice president of the banned Cambodia National Rescue Party when she flew into Bangkok's main global airport.

"The embassy of Cambodia in Jakarta requests Indonesian authorities to arrest Mu Sochua and deport her to Cambodia immediately in the true spirit of ASEAN", the statement said.

On Monday, Malaysian authorities detained two Cambodian activists waiting to board a flight to Thailand.

Dozens of other opposition activists who fled Cambodia fearing arrest have vowed to return in support of Rainsy.

At least 48 opposition activists have been arrested this year and accused of plotting to overthrow the government.

His party was forced to dissolve before last year's parliamentary election in which Hun Sen's ruling party won every seat.



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