On 14 May, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for National Defence Tea Banh of the ruling Cambodia People's Party (CPP) said that military force would be used if opposition parties protested against the results of local elections in June.
Banh made the comments in a public speech at the inauguration ceremony of a new Provincial Administrative Hall.
Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) President Kem Sohka encouraged party supporters on 17 May to adhere to non-violent protests, and avoid engaging with negative government statements. The Cambodian government, led by Prime Minister Hun Sen, has progressively imposed restrictions on opposition party activity, as well as civil society in the months before the June election.
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