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Cambodians hold mass protest over Khmer Rouge prison denial

Published on Jun 9, 2013 3:32 PM

PHNOM PENH (AFP) - About 10,000 Cambodians protested in the capital on Sunday to show their anger at an opposition leader who allegedly described a notorious Khmer Rouge prison as a Vietnamese invention.

The rally came two days after parliament passed a law banning the denial of atrocities committed by the hardline communist regime - a move which the opposition claimed was politically motivated before elections in July.

In a recording posted on a government website last month, the deputy head of the Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), Mr Kem Sokha, purportedly said that Tuol Sleng prison in the capital Phnom Penh was staged by Vietnamese soldiers who ousted the Khmer Rouge in 1979.

The CNRP has said his remarks were doctored to cause "political trouble" before the July 28 elections, when Prime Minister Hun Sen is seeking to extend his nearly three decades in power.

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