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Hun Sen warns internal war if opposition wins July’s polls

PHNOM PENH, April 19 (Xinhua) — Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen warned on Friday that there will be “an internal war” if the opposition Cambodian National Rescue Party (CNRP) wins a general election on July 28.

The premier’s warning followed the announcement of the self- exiled opposition leader Sam Rainsy on Wednesday that he will convict members of Cambodia’s current government accused of Khmer Rouge-era killings if his party wins the general election in July.

Via a video from the United States to about 200 supporters gathering at the Choeung Ek Killing Field to mark the fall of Phnom Penh to the Khmer Rouge on April 17, 1975, Sam Rainsy did not name those government members, but references to “ministers and deputy prime ministers” were consistent with his statement on April 17 last year, when he called for legal action against Prime Minister Hun Sen, Senate President Chea Sim and National Assembly President Heng Samrin.

“He (Sam Rainsy) has not come to power, but he dares to use insolent remarks, announcing to convict members of the current government, and Hun Sen,” the prime minister said during the inauguration of new achievements at a Buddhist pagoda in western Kampong Speu province.

“An internal war will definitely happen if he (Sam Rainsy) wins the election because no one will let the other arrest easily. There will be fighting back,” the premier said. “We have no wish to stage war, but they threaten to do war (with us) first.”

However, the premier said he did not believe that the opposition party could win in the forthcoming election.

“Based on previous results, the opposition party needs to seek at least another 3 million votes to win the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP),” he said.

On March 25, the premier predicted that his CPP would win at least two-thirds majority in the general election this July.

Hun Sen, 61, has been in power for 28 years and vowed to stay in the office until he is 90.

In the last election in 2008, the CPP won 90 seats out of the 123 parliamentary seats, while the Sam Rainsy Party won 26 seats, the Human Rights Party three seats, the Funcinpec Party two seats and the Norodom Ranariddh Party two seats.

Self-exiled Sam Rainsy is currently the leader of the CNRP, which was a merger between the Sam Rainsy Party and the Human Rights Party.

Sam Rainsy, 63, fled the country in late 2009 before a Cambodian court sentenced him to 11 years in jail in absentia for two charges — removing border poles and publishing a false map of the border with Vietnam and accusing deputy prime minister and foreign minister Hor Namhong of being a member of the Democratic Kampuchea, or known as Khmer Rouge.

In November, the National Election Committee removed his name from the voter list for the July’s election on the grounds that he is a convicted criminal, meaning that he will be unable to participate in the upcoming election.

 

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Written by Kham

19/04/2013 at 5:31 pm

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