Fake news on COVID-19 leads to jail in Cambodia
Prime minister says COVID-19 ‘no joke’ as opposition member lands in trouble for posting ‘fake pictures’ of dead people
Cambodian authorities have begun tightening regulations on anything deemed "fake news" in relation to COVID-19, following Prime Minister Hun Sen’s Friday warning to jail those responsible for spreading them.
“Please do not take the COVID-19 issue as a joke, it is not acceptable. This is not a right of expression. The world is against fake news, why can Cambodia not do it?” Sen asked.
The premier’s remarks came after a member of the opposition Candlelight Party was arrested for allegedly posting pictures of dead people on social media and “falsely claiming” that they were bodies of people who had just died of COVID-19 in the Southeast Asian nation.
“Anyone who uses COVID-19 to destroy public safety will face legal action,” Sen warned.
He was addressing a ceremony to mark the 18th National Fisheries Day in Phnom Srok district of Banteay Meanchey province, according to Cambodia’s official AKP News.
He urged people to continue adhering to health safety rules against the pandemic.
The Buddhist-majority nation has reported over 133,200 coronavirus cases until Friday since December 2019, when the pandemic began. Some 3,000 Cambodians have died due to the virus.