World Bulletin/News Desk
Police in Cambodia have stepped up pressure on an anti-Vietnamese dissident group, claiming it is planning the violent overthrow of the government, local media reported Monday.
The Khmer National Liberation Front, which alleges that Prime Minister Hun Sen’s government is a puppet of Vietnam, has “hundreds of armed forces,” Lieutenant General Kirth Chantharith, spokesman for the National Police, told the Cambodia Daily.
He added that “confiscated lists” proved the existence of armed groups “hiding in the country.”
The police comments follow last month’s arrests of 10 KNLF members, who have since been charged with plotting to incite violence. At the time the police alleged the group was “training terrorist forces to secretly plant explosives near the Thai border” and “topple the government through the use of illegal armed force.”
KNLF leader Sam Serey denied the claims and accused police of beating the detained members ahead of their trial. The suspects are being held in Prey Sar prison on the outskirts of Phnom Penh.
“I have received information from the families of our members that… they are not allowed to visit, and [the arrested men] were threatened to answer questions and beaten by police during questioning,” said Serey by telephone from Denmark, where he has lived in exile since 2010.
Commenting on the documents refered to by police, Serey said they were protest materials such as banners, documents and books.
“I think the police made this story and created this evidence to arrest us,” he told The Anadolu Agency Monday, denying fresh claims that his group is linked to the Tiger Head Movement, which was behind an alleged 2009 bomb plot.
Chantharith was unavailable for further comment Monday.Last Mod: 03 Kasım 2014, 14:08