Prominent Cambodian Activist Shot Dead

Prominent Cambodian Activist Shot DeadProminent Cambodian Activist Shot Dead

Kem Ley, a prominent Cambodian political commentator and critic of the government, has been shot dead, local media say. They quote police as saying he was killed at a gas station in the capital Phnom Penh. A suspect was later arrested, reports say. The motive of the attack was not immediately known. Kem Ley was involved in grassroots activist groups, criticizing the government of Prime Minister Hun Sen, BBC reported. Cambodia became a multi-party democracy in 1993, but opponents accuse the prime minister of running a violent and authoritarian system. Hun Sen, who heads the Cambodian People’s Party, has led the country for decades. The CPP won disputed general elections in 2013, taking 68 seats compared with 55 for the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party. The CNRP initially boycotted its parliamentary seats but later reached an agreement with the CPP. In July 2014, protests erupted over a government decision to close Freedom Park, leading to violent clashes, and tear gas and batons being deployed.