Feb 21: Reuters reported: King Norodom Sihanouk said he opposes conscription
and believes the government should stick to volunteers in the fight against the Khmer
Rouge. The King made the statement from Bejing, where he is undergoing medical treatment.
Feb 22: Reuters reported: Cambodia has achieved self-sufficiency in rice
growing for the first time in 25 years and will soon issue licenses for the export
of 120,000 tons of rice, Commerce Minister Cham Prasidh said. Local traders will
be allowed to export a maximum of 3,000 tons.
Feb 24: Mine Awareness Day was celebrated in Phnom Penh, Banteay Meanchey,
Battambang and Kampot, with National Assembly Chairman Chea Sim and Information Minister
Ieng Mouly speaking in Phnom Penh.
Feb 24: Dancing before millions in Singapore's annual Chingay 24 parade
celebrating arts and culture were 30 Cambodians from the Ministry of Culture and
Fine Arts and the Ministry of Tourism. Cambodian guests of honor included HRH Princess
Norodom Buppha Devi and HRH Princess Rattana Devi.
Feb 26: Reuters reported: Media organizations carrying stories demoralizing
to the armed forces face temporary closure, the Ministry of Information said. "It
is very sad that a minority of papers are inaccurate, not only by opposing government
decisions but also by discouraging the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces in their fighting
and looking down on the spirit and labors of the army," said Information Secretary
of State Khieu Kanharith.
Feb 27: A four-year attack on rural poverty was launched by the United
Nations Development Program and the government. With UNDP putting up $20.5 million,
the Cambodian Area Rehabilitation and Regeneration Project will operate in Battambang,
Pursat, Banteay Meanchey, Siem Reap and Ratanakiri provinces. Activities include
improving social services, creating jobs and income opportunities, production and
Feb 28: First Prime Minister Norodom Ranariddh formally opened a $2 million
Thai-owned battery factory that will produce more than one million vehicle batteries
a year, most for motorcycles. The Cambodian Storage Battery Factory Ltd will send
30 percent of its production to Thailand.
Feb 28: Reuters reported: The International Monetary Fund is expected to
disburse a further $20 million to Cambodia, said IMF representative Joshua Charap.
The announcement followed a two-week visit by IMF officials who found the government
was doing a good job despite budgetary pressures, he said.
Feb 29: Reuters reported: Government forces have recaptured parts of Phnom
Veng (Long Mountain) commanding access to the northwestern headquarters of the Khmer
Rouge, co-Defense Minister Tea Banh said. The hill is 20 kilometers east of the Pailin
March 3: Reuters reported: Government troops have advanced to within eight
to ten km of Pailin, the Khmer Rough headquarters, said Serei Kosal, deputy governor
of Battambang Province. He said troops were surrounding Pailin but were not rushing
March 4: Reuters reported: First Prime Minister Norodom Ranariddh accused
Thailand of border encroachments in former resistance-controlled areas. He said he
had been told by armed forces commander-in-chief Gen Ke Kim Yan that the Thais were
making a new border line in some areas and constructing roads and buildings. Ranariddh
also said that planned talks in in Laos on a border dispute with Vietnam had been
postponed because Vietnamese Premier Vo Van Kiet had changed his schedule.
March 4: Awards went to 13 winners in drawing, creative writing and photography
on "Cambodian Women's Value," a competition sponsored by the Women's Media
Centre of Cambodia marking International Women's Day.
March 4: A three-day conference on Women in Fisheries in Indochine will
begin March 6 at the Hotel Juliana.