Two political parties are to file lawsuits asking the Supreme Court to dissolve the opposition CNRP.
The Cambodian Youth Party and Funcinpec want the court to disband the CNRP by as soon as next week, over claims the party conspired with its leader and the US to topple the government.
CNRP leader Kem Sokha was last month charged with treason over comments made in 2013 video footage from Australia-based CBN news, which showed him saying the US government had been helping him to push for regime change in Cambodia since 1993.
CYP president Pich Sros yesterday claimed the CNRP should be dissolved because the allegations against Mr Sokha pointed to systematic treason within the party.
Mr Sros said all politicians must consider the interests of the nation, adding the next generation did not want to see the country fall under the control of foreign powers as in the past.
“Politicians have the right to be concerned about dangers to the nation and if the CNRP is taking Cambodia under the control of foreigners,” Mr Sros said.
“I don’t want Mr Sokha to damage our national reputation and the honour of Khmer citizens.”
Funcinpec vice-president Nhep Bunchin could not be reached for comment but told Fresh News on Saturday that party leader Prince Norodom Ranariddh would also file a lawsuit to dissolve the CNRP on the basis Mr Sokha had committed treason.
Mr Sokha has yet to stand trial on the charges he faces.
CNRP representatives could not be reached for comment yesterday and several senior opposition figures have reportedly left the country to avoid possible arrest as the authorities continue their investigation into Mr Sokha’s alleged crimes.
CNRP lawmaker Son Chhay said late last month that members of the party were simply carrying out work abroad and would return to Cambodia when they were finished.
“They are not afraid,” he said.
Political analyst Meas Ny said the lawsuits were part of efforts to intimidate the CNRP.
The US, Australia and the United Nations are among those in the international community that have denounced the arrest of Mr Sokha ahead of the general election next year.
Cambodian labourers in South Korea yesterday held a mass demonstration to demand the release of Mr Sokha, who is being held in Tbong Khmum province’s CC3 prison.
Speaking yesterday during a meeting with garment workers at Koh Pich, Prime Minister Hun Sen said the US had called for the release of Mr Sokha but had no right to comment on Cambodian affairs since it had dropped bombs on the country in the Vietnam War.
“You bombed my country and killed my people. I am just implementing the law to maintain peace in the nation,” he said.
“Mr Sokha is a lawmaker who has broken the law and has to be prosecuted in court.
“It was lucky I wasn’t toppled. I am just applying the constitution to protect my country’s independence and sovereignty.”