Police in Cambodia say a dispute over money led to the shooting death of a prominent political analyst at a shopping mall in the capital Phnom Penh.

National police spokesman Gen. Kirth Chantharith says Kem Lay was shot dead Sunday morning and his attacker arrested shortly after. He says the suspect claimed to have carried out the shooting because Kem Lay allegedly failed to pay him back for a loan.

The killing comes at a time of political tension that began last year with the pressure on the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party by the government of Prime Minister Hun Sen.

Kem Lay was often critical of the government in comments made on popular radio stations and in the few independent Cambodian newspapers.