Ebene News – UA – ‘They’re playing games’: Former Victoria MP in limbo as Cambodia ‘incitement’ trial adjourned

Former Victoria MP awaits verdict on Cambodia incitement trial in limbo after saying he was adjourned without a set date

Hong Lim is one of 15 people named in a class action lawsuit for incitement or incitement to provocation by the Cambodian government

M Lim, who served in the Victoria legislature for 22 years and did not go to Cambodia for the trial, told ABC the adjournment was a “typical decision” made by the Cambodian government

“They just play games to drag fear into people’s heads and minds,” he said

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M Lim, who has long criticized the Cambodian government and Prime Minister Hun Sen, faces jail time if he returns to his home country

“He [Prime Minister Hun Sen] does whatever he wants and gets by and has been governing for 40 years”

His harsh criticism of the government – especially following the murder of his friend and activist Kem Lay – resulted in him being banned from entering the country in 2016

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M Lim said he was unaware of the charges until he found out, through friends of human rights networks, that his name was on a list filed in front of a court in Phnom Penh less than a week ago

But he had not been contacted by Cambodian police or ordered to appear at his own trial, which began on December 30.

He said he has since been in regular contact with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT)

On Monday, DFAT said in a statement to ABC it was aware of reports that an Australian was facing charges in Cambodia and was ready to provide consular assistance

The CBA has also reached out to DFAT for comment on the adjournment of Mr. Lim, but did not receive a comment in time for the post

Ten of the other people listed alongside M Lim, who are mainly young activists, are already in pre-trial detention and charged with incitement to commit a crime

The other four listed were members of the Cambodian National Rescue Party (CNRP), before its disbandment in 2017, and are all believed to be living in exile

One of them is the young activist Seng Mengbunrong who, like Mr. Lim, has always been banned from returning to his home country

Currently living in exile in Malaysia, M Mengbunrong said he was not surprised to learn that his name was on the list

“I know the Hun Sen regime is afraid of the power of the people and is using the court to [silence] our voice, but cannot,” he said

Inspired by the Hong Kong democracy and freedom movement, M Mengbunrong said he had “openly called for regime change through mass protests”

Despite the ban on entering Cambodia, he has remained politically active on social media and calls on the country’s young people to stand up for political justice

Representatives of the Cambodian Embassy in Australia did not respond to CBA requests for comment

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AEST = Australian Eastern Standard Time, which is 10 hours ahead of GMT (Greenwich Mean Time)

Cambodia, Hong Lim, Hun Sen, Australia, Member of Parliament, Victoria

Ebene News – UA – “They are playing games”: former Victoria MP in limbo as trial for “ incitement ” in Cambodia adjourned

Source: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-12-30/cambodia-trial-for-former-australian-mp-hong-lim-adjourned/13022198