Prince Norodom Ranariddh, leader of the royalist Funcinpec party, has called on opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party president Sam Rainsy not to “block aid” to Cambodia following a resolution passed by the European Parliament last week that suggested aid could be slashed if an arrest warrant against Rainsy is not rescinded.
“He is a Cambodian leader and talked to foreigners to block aid to the Cambodian people,” Ranariddh told reporters yesterday. “Will he be responsible in front of the Cambodian people? It is a decision for the European Parliament, and there was no need for him to call for aid to be cut off.”
Ranariddh also urged Europe not to entertain Rainsy’s request as it would hurt ordinary Cambodians. The EU gives hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to Cambodia each year.
“If I was a donor country, I’d let Cambodian leaders resolve their own internal disputes. I would not cut off aid where aid is needed,” Ranariddh added.
The comments came as ruling Cambodian People’s Party spokesman Sok Eysan said a meeting to seek a resolution to the ongoing political crisis was planned for today or Tuesday.
Meanwhile, the National Assembly and Senate lashed out at the EU for interfering in the judicial process.
In the case of CNRP deputy president Kem Sokha’s dismissal from parliament, the bodies said he had acted unethically in the position and incited people to commit violent acts, while in Rainsy’s case they said it was a private legal matter between Rainsy and Namhong.