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Motion for a resolution - B9-0176/2023Motion for a resolution

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on Cambodia: the case of opposition leader Kem Sokha

14.3.2023 - (2023/2589(RSP))

with request for inclusion in the agenda for a debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
pursuant to Rule 144 of the Rules of Procedure

Frédérique Ries Petras Auštrevičius Malik Azmani Nicola Beer Izaskun Bilbao Barandica Dita Charanzová Olivier Chastel Katalin Cseh Vlad Gheorghe Bernard Guetta Svenja Hahn Karen Melchior Dragoş Pîslaru Michal Šimečka Ramona Strugariu Dragoş Tudorache Hilde Vautmans
on behalf of the Renew Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B9-0169/2023

Procedure : 2023/2589(RSP)
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European Parliament resolution on Cambodia: the case of opposition leader Kem Sokha


The European Parliament,

-  having regard to its previous resolutions on Cambodia,

-  having regard its Rule 144,


  1. Whereas since the Supreme Court dissolved the  Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), the Cambodian Government has been waging a crackdown against members of the political opposition, by jailing, fining and pushing them into exile;


  1. whereas the government crackdown on independent media, civil society organisations and political opposition that began in 2017 has continued, including through sham mass trials, persecution of activists such as Seng Theary and opposition Candlelight Party leadership and members, restrictions of liberties and closure on 13 February 2023 of Voice of Democracy, one of Cambodia’s last independent media outlets;


  1. Whereas Kem Sokha the former CNRP president was arrested in 2017 over accusations of conspiracy to overthrow Prime Minister Hun Sen and held in “arbitrary” pre-trial detention (according to UN), until his conditional release into house arrest on 10 September 2018. 


  1. Whereas on 3 March 2023, after two years of an “artificially prolonged trial” that “failed to meet the standard of either Cambodian or international human rights law” (according to UN experts), Kem Sokha was sentenced to 27 years under house arrest and has been stripped of all civil and political rights, including from participating in the July 2023 elections.


  1. calls for immediate and unconditional release of Kem Sokha and all opposition officials and activists convicted or held in custody on politically motivated charges;


  1. Calls for the immediate reinstatement of the CNRP for participation in the 2023 elections;


  1. calls on the Cambodian Prime Minister and his government to immediately end all forms of intimidation and harassment, including judicial harassment of members of the opposition, human rights defenders, the media and civil society actors;


  1. Urges the Cambodian authorities to ensure free and fair elections in July 2023, allowing all political parties to carry out an equal, free and transparent electoral campaign under a more inclusive and transparent National Election Committee;


  1. Insists that the legitimacy of Cambodian government depends on the free elections;


  1. calls on further suspension of Cambodia’s EBA status should the independent electoral observers find evidence of unfair 2023 elections or further violations of human rights;


  1. Urges the Commission to define human rights benchmarks as part of its ongoing enhanced engagement with the Cambodian authorities, and to provide direct assistance to the most vulnerable segments of civil society;


  1. Reiterates its call for targeted sanctions and urges the Council to adopt restrictive measures, against the political leaders and leaders of the security forces including their economic interests;


  1. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the HRVP of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the Secretary-General of ASEAN and the Government, Prime Minister and National Assembly of Cambodia.



Last updated: 14 March 2023
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