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Independence Day, Water Festival went on unhindered

Taing Vida / Khmer Times Share:
Teams of boat racers take part in the Water Festival earlier this week in the capital. KT/Chor Sokunthea

Despite Sam Rainsy’s threats of planned return on November 9 to stir chaos, the Kingdom managed to celebrate Independence Day and the Water Festival peacefully, Interior Minister Sar Kheng said yesterday.

In a Facebook post, Mr Kheng said this year’s celebrations were held peacefully in spite of the threats of turmoil fomented by Rainsy, his accomplices and supporters in an attempt to overthrow the government.

Mr Kheng said despite concerns over social insecurity and public disorder, the government was able to organise the two celebrations.

“Although this year the celebrations of Independence Day and the Water Festival were held with the rebellious group announcing their plan to return to the Kingdom and stir social unrest in a bid to topple the government, security was fully guaranteed and no incidents occurred,” he said.

“This reflects the fact that Cambodian people, civil servants, and all forces are committed to protecting the nation, religion and the King,” he added. “It is clearly indicative that we all are strongly against any attempt aimed at dissolving the monarchy, overthrowing the government, and destroying our peace.”


Rainsy had been vowing to return to the Kingdom to restore democracy and human rights on November 9.

Mr Rainsy and other ex-CNRP senior officials arrived in Kuala Lumpur from Paris over the weekend after he was barred from entering Thailand.

Major General Pech Vanna, director of RCAF Cambodia-Thailand Relation Border office, said the situation along the border was as usual.

“The situation along the border of both countries was good. There was no irregularities,” Maj Gen Vanna said. “Our authorities, in cooperation with Thai authorities, have well controlled the situation.”

Soeng Sen Karuna, senior investigator for rights group Adhoc, said people were unable to fully enjoy the celebrations due to heightened security measures.

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