Cambodian Freedom Fighters

Cambodian Freedom Fighters

The Cambodian Freedom Fighters (CFF) (Khmer: Cholana Kangtoap Serei Cheat Kampuchea) is an anti-communist political and paramilitary organization that was established on October 21, 1989, by its founder, Chhun Yasith, at Poipet near the Cambodian-Thai border. Their headquarters are in Long Beach, California, United States. It was incorporated and registered at the Californian Secretary of State's office as a political organization in June 1999, and aims "to fight against communists to protect the interests of Cambodian people."

The CFF claim to have 500 members in the United States and up to 20,000 supporters in the Kingdom of Cambodia.



On November 24, 2000, a Cambodian Freedom Fighters team of about seventy (CFF) agents slipped into the center of the Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh. Armed with B-40 rockets and assault rifles, they moved swiftly toward the Defence Ministry building and a military barracks. They attacked the Ministry of Defense and the Council of Ministers, peppering them with fire, then turned their weapons on a local television station and a nearby military base. State security forces engaged the group in a fierce firefight that lasted more than an hour, leaving bullet holes in ministry offices and blood pooled in the street. By daybreak, eight people lay dead. In the wake of the violence, more than 200 people, including Richard Kiri Kim, were arrested by the Cambodian police.

On June 22, 2001, the Cambodian Criminal Court handed down their verdict on the Cambodian Freedom Fighters’ attack of November 24, 2000. An Mao, Nou Saron, and three Cambodian-Americans (Richard Kiri Kim, Thong Samien, and Chhun Yasith) were sentenced to life in prison on charges of conspiring to commit terrorism. Chhun Yasith and Thong Samien were tried in absentia.

Twenty-four other men and one woman were found guilty of various charges and given prison terms ranging from three to 20 years. Among them were two prominent former Khmer Rouge commanders, Seng Narin and Tumlap Mil, who each received 15 years in prison.


The Cambodian Freedom Fighters have chosen not to participate in the election process in Cambodia because they state Prime Minister Hun Sen belonged to the ultra-left Khmer Rouge and he has rigged the election process in Cambodia. They have chosen to remove Hun Sen's government militarily because they believe he and his regime are guilty of corruption in the election process in collaboration with the Communist Vietnamese that placed Hun Sen in power in 1989.

The Cambodian Freedom Fighters violate the U.S. Neutrality Act, but, similar to its treatment of the Government of Free Vietnam (a Vietnamese counterpart), the U.S. government has not taken a strong stance against them.

In 2008, Chhun Yasith, founder of the Cambodian Freedom Fighters, was tried and convicted in the U.S., in relation to masterminding the 2000 coup attempt.[1]


The Cambodian Freedom Fighters collect operating funds through active solicitation of donations from the Cambodian-American community in the United States and Cambodian refugees in Europe.

See also


  1. ^ Man guilty of Cambodia coup plot, April 17, 2008. BBC News

External links

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