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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - King makes stark warning

King makes stark warning

DECLARATION of His Royal Majesty Preah Bat Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk

Varman, King of Cambodia, Beijing, 9 July 1994

From 18 March 1970 to today, 9 July 1994

our Cambodian nation and people have known only the deepest and most pitiful

misery and disaster and looking to the future we Cambodians still cannot see the

light of peace and happiness.

T he leaders who continue their pitiless

killing of each other should immediately abandon their mutual hatred, the

neglect of the supreme national interest, the mistaking of personal interest and

ambition and party interest to be the highest values of patriotism.


present the international community and the countries who are genuine friends of

Cambodia have the deepest regret at the increasingly serious events occurring in

Cambodia. They say that in the present Cambodian catastrophe, the fighting of

Khmers against Khmers, there can be no winners or losers except one loser the

ordinary, poor people of Cambodia.

It is an undoubted fact that the

ordinary, poor individuals in Khmer society are suffering growing and

incomparable misery. Wherever there is war, it is the ordinary, poor people who

lose their lives, or - if not their lives - suffer the greatest harm of every

kind and lose even their few possessions, have their villages destroyed, have

their houses burned to cinders, lose their chickens, ducks, pigs and buffaloes,

lose their rice fields and gardens, lose their brothers and sisters, sons and

daughters, lose their arms and legs, lose their sight, and lose their honor as

members of the Khmer Angkorian race.

At this time, when Vietnam and Laos

are progressing in every field, including social and economic development, and

their people are uniting together in peace, freedom and happiness, we Khmers,

who boast that we are of the Khmer Angkorian race, instead hate each other, are

happy only when killing each other, happy only when destroying our own nation,

destroying our own country, destroying our own national riches. Having seen

this, the international community and the genuine friends of our country do not

respect us. Even if they smile and are polite to us, in their hearts they look

down on our Khmer nation as a mediocre race.

In view of this hellish

situation, all Khmers, including all leaders, should agree with their hearts and

souls to cease fighting, cease killing each other and instead agree to shake

hands once more, unite together, not forgetting that we are of the same blood,

we are all Khmers, and as Khmers we should pity our country and our


If we can completely abandon the deception of taking our

personal and group interests to be the national interest and if we return to the

truths of Lord Buddha, the Greatest Teacher, the truths of compassion,

impartiality, non-violence, solidarity, peace and fraternity, we - regardless of

which side we are from - can unite and save Cambodia from falling into ruin and

allow it to raise its head and not be ashamed in front of other


In conclusion, I hope that all leaders on both sides will

follow the poor, ordinary people on the path of unity, non-violence and peace:

the conditions which we Khmers must all reach if our Cambodian people and

motherland are to survive in independence, unity and territorial integrity into

the future.



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