H IS Majesty King Norodom Sihanouk on Monday May 2 said he did not want
Cambodians guarding him.
He'll keep his North Korean bodyguards, thank
"I absolutely refuse to have a royal guard because according to my own past
experience and what I have observed in Africa and South America, they [leaders]
are deposed by their commander in chief, their presidential guards or royal
guards," he said.
Sihanouk, speaking to a small group of Cambodian
reporters, said he recalled the day in 1970 when he was overthrown by a cousin
in a US-supported coup that installed Lon Nol as head of an ill-fated Republic
"I was deposed by one of my cousins, Sirik Matak, and the
commander in chief and prime minister I appointed, General Lon Nol, and by my
own army, not a republican army or communist army, I was overthrown by my own
royal guards," he said.
Sihanouk was responding to an offer by the
Cambodian government to provide n all-Khmer royal guard to supervize his
"I am better protected by 25 North Koreans from the
Democratic Republic of Korean," the 71-year-old monarch said.
it was unpatriotic to surround himself with foreign bodyguards.
my national pride as a Khmer but my experience and the experience of my brothers
in Africa and South America is very bitter," he said.
Sihanouk said he
would tell the coalition government to stop its plan to form a royal
"If it wants a royal guard it means it wants to overthrow
Sihanouk," he said.
Lon Nol was driven from power by the Maoist Khmer
Rouge in 1975. During their rule at least a million Cambodians were killed by
execution, starvation and disease.