A Tiger Rules the Mountain

The world's longest serving Prime Minister and Cambodia's pursuit of democracy

Post 2013 Election Demonstrations

‘The searing heat of the sun bounced back at me from the concrete, so I found some shade sitting with six women, all neighbours, under one of the small trees that frame the edges of the park. The youngest woman in the group was in her mid-twenties and fluent in English from working with foreigners in the aid sector. One of her neighbours could also speak some English due to her engagement with foreigners in a different sector involving late night bars and karaoke.

Post 2013 protest - justice, peace
post 2013 election protest - my vote, my nation
Chapter 8,
Drop by Drop the Bucket Fills

“Having exhausted all legal and procedural avenues in the month following the election, the CNRP immediately called for mass demonstrations in six towns throughout Cambodia. Crowds of up to 40,000 people returned to Phnom Penh’s Freedom Park. Rotha said it became like a village:

“People came from different parts of Cambodia. They build tents there. When I go to Freedom Park, it was full, crowded. My colleagues would give money and we would buy food for them [the protestors]. There were many people holding signs up – Where is my vote?

Group of women, post 2013 election protest
Chapter 8, Drop by Drop the Bucket Fills

Two much older women in the group were small, wrinkled and smiling brightly wearing CNRP t-shirts and stickers on their cheeks. These two women had lived through civil war and the Khmer Rouge in the 1970s, Vietnamese occupation in the 1980s, and the deadly squabbles of the 1990s. It would have been easy for them to accept that the Cambodia of 2013 was better than before and good enough for now, but they didn’t. They were protesting because they believed that something better was possible.

Chapter 8, Drop by Drop the Bucket Fills

‘Sunday 22nd December was the eighth day of consecutive protest and the biggest yet. Sunday is the only day factory workers get off and at least 30,000 people marched down Monivong Boulevard, turned along Mao Tse Toung Boulevard, up and around Phnom Penh’s Olympic Stadium, turning east along Charles de Gaulle Boulevard before returning to their base, Freedom Park. While walking along Monivong Boulevard, Rainsy and Sokha halted the protestors as they neared Hun Sen’s house and invited some to explain why they wanted Hun Sen to step down.’

Rainsy & Sokha in post election protest march
Rainsy (white shirt) & Sokha (grey shirt) lead a protest march, both holding Cambodian flags, and Rainsy waves a Japanese one too
post election protest march

Video Trailer

Watch footages of the rallies and protests that ignited a decade-long struggle for power.

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