PHNOM PENH, Feb. 24 (Xinhua) -- Cambodia's three convicted opposition politicians have resigned from their parties, just days after the parliament amended a law to ban convicts from leading a political party, their lawyer said Friday.
The convicted politicians are ex-lawmaker Um Sam An, a member of the board of directors of the Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), Meach Sovannara, a member of CNRP's board of directors, and ex-Senator Hong Sok Hour, a member of the board of directors of the legacy Sam Rainsy Party.
The Sam Rainsy Party was merged into the CNRP in 2012 but still exists for legal reasons.
"They thumbprinted their resignation letters in front of me and through me, submitted them to their parties on Thursday," said Som Sokong, a defense lawyer for the trio.
According to the resignation letters released to the media late Thursday, the convicted trio wrote that their resignation was due to "personal reasons."
CNRP lawmaker Eng Chhay Eang confirmed Friday that the party had already received their resignation letters.
Their resignation came just five days after the National Assembly, controlled by Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen's ruling party, amended the Law on political parties to bar convicted politicians from leading a political party and to empower the Supreme Court to dissolve any political party over the conviction of a top party official.
In 2016, Um Sam An got two and a half years in jail for accusing the Cambodian government of using fake border map with Vietnam.
Hong Sok Hour received a seven-year imprisonment for forgery and incitement, while Meach Sovannara were sentenced in 2015 to 20 years in prison for leading an insurrection.
Earlier this month, CNRP's president Sam Rainsy, who has lived in self exile in France since November 2015 to avoid a seven-year imprisonment for defamation and incitement cases, also resigned from the party's presidency in hopes of saving the CNRP from dissolution.