Government official Heng Ratana took to Facebook yesterday, reminding the public that Cambodia has enjoyed “unprecedented” peace, and drawing a sharp contrast with countries like Central African Republic, where four Cambodian UN peacekeepers were killed this week.
“The overwhelming majority of Cambodians are aware of or experienced war in the country and are currently living under the shadow of peace, unprecedented in the last 500 years of history,” read the post by the director of the Cambodian Mine Action Centre (CMAC), who often makes strong public comments on issues far wider than the CMAC brief.
The post went on to warn that multiple countries in Africa are embroiled in “war and social unrest”, like CAR.
Ratana’s statement comes the day after Prime Minister Hun Sen warned that “war will happen if the CPP does not control the country anymore”.
Political analyst Ou Virak said Ratana’s post “fits the pattern” of the ruling Cambodian People’s Party strategy to create fear of societal collapse should the ruling party lose elections.
“The people are nervous. The majority don’t believe [war] will happen, but they will be jittery. That’s the intention.”