CNRP Vice President Kem Sokha flew to Thailand on Wednesday for dental treatment, according to a party spokesman, the first time the deputy opposition leader has left Cambodia since his royal pardon on December 2.
Mr. Sokha was handed a five-month prison sentence in absentia in September for failing to appear in court for questioning over a “prostitution” case widely seen as politically motivated.
After spending months holed up inside CNRP headquarters while avoiding arrest, he was pardoned at Prime Minister Hun Sen’s request and has since rejoined parliament.
Party spokesman Yem Ponhearith said on Wednesday that Mr. Sokha and his daughter Kem Monovithya, the CNRP’s deputy public affairs director, took a morning flight out of Phnom Penh International Airport and would be away for no more than a week.
“He went to Thailand for a medical checkup. He has severe pain in his teeth,” he said.
The spokesman added that Mr. Sokha had no plans to meet with CNRP President Sam Rainsy, for whom an arrest warrant was issued late last year and who has since been banned by the government from returning to Cambodia.
sokhean@cambodiadaily.com
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