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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - They said it... the movers and shakers

They said it... the movers and shakers

"No negotiation is successful at the negotiating table alone. What we get depends on the fighting," A Khmer Rouge official's view - shared by the government - of more fighting in the run-up to the failed peace talks.

"All the rank and file - the Khmer Rouge and us - don't want to fight but we must obey (our orders). It is hard to understand why the leaders on both sides don't want to compromise," RCAF General Em Saray.

"I wish for peace for my people but I can take no measures to facilitate that peace while a great political chasm exists between the leaders of the Royal government and the PDK (Khmer Rouge)," King Norodom Sihanouk on his efforts to arrange peace talks.

"Maha Ghosananda has been the voice of compassion during Cambodia's struggle for peace" US Senator Claiborne Pell, nominating Cambodia's most-celebrated Buddhist monk for the 1994 Nobel Peace prize.

"Soon, we'll have a Dhammayietra to Pailin to help out friends reforest the area. This time we will be armed with trees," Maha Ghosananda, announcing plans for a peace march to Pailin.

"All the Khmer Rouge guerrillas have fled toward the border - they left behind some weapons and ammunition," Army chief of staff Lieutenant-General Ke Kim Yan on the fall of Anglong Veng, days before the KR retook it.

"The situation here is completely different to Anglong Veng," General Pol Saroeun after government troops took the KR-capital of Pailin. The KR took it back again.

"It seemed like any other Cambodian town, except the advertisements were mainly in Thai," Italian photographer Giovanni Diffidenti, one of the first Westerners into Pailin.

"How dare you insult my bosses. They are rich, not poor like you. They have beautiful houses and healthy families." Angry KR soldier responding to taunts over the radio from government troops in Pailin.

"I hope they will cooperate with us," Maha Ghosananda, before beginning the Pailin peace march, asking the KR not hinder the march.

"Both the Khmer Rouge and the government troops were shouting at the monks to get down and get out of the way," peace marcher Kevin Maloney, after two marchers were killed and four wounded when caught in a cross-fire.

"We must put an end to this war but no-one listens to me," King Norodom Sihanouk, after peace talks broke down.

"This is a revolution - people do not realize how far reaching it is," Sam Rainsy on his new Budget Law.

"I feel like I just lost my baby which has just been born," Minister of Culture Nouth Narang watching fire destroy the Bassac Theatre.

"The word has reached England that a kilo of marijuana goes for $1 here," a backpacker stating the obvious that gave rise to hopes of an impending tourist boom.

"This has increased my love of Cambodia and my desire to work here. I'm coming back," US aid worker Melissa Himes (above) after her release by KR kidnappers.

"His Excellency Hun Sen and others want me to remain powerless. I will no longer intervene in their affairs," King Sihanouk, announcing his decision to withdraw from politics.

"I want to inform you that there is no intention to restrict any freedom of expression of the press," Information Minister Ieng Mouly on the controversial draft press laws.

"My father wanted to show people the truth. Now we see he has no right to print the truth," Norind Lakishmy, son of jailed Morning News editor Ngoun Noun.

"The right to freedom of expression is at stake in Cambodia," Amnesty International, following the murder of

newspaper editor Non Chan.

"Nobody wants to be corrupt but we have to live," a Phnom Penh teacher who earns 50,000 riel a month, on accepting bribes from students for good marks.

"Any thought of Cambodia going back to authoritarianism is very old-fashioned," acting Head of State Chea Sim speaking at the National Assembly's first anniversary in Phnom Penh.

"I was not informed about this," Foreign Minister Prince Norodom Sirivudh, on a deal giving responsibility from the finance to the defence ministry for logging exports.

"Please before they kill me, come now. Call the American Embassy and tell them my life is in danger," Prince Norodom Chakrapong (right) to the Phnom Penh Post on the morning of the coup.

"I'm alright Papa, but the situation is bad. They have surrounded me," Chakrapong to the King in Beijing, in one of the 40 mobile phone calls made in his last hours at the Regent Hotel, Room 406.

"I am innocent. I was not involved in anything," Chakrapong, later that night, in exile in Malaysia.

"There are little steps being taken which are unheralded but which are the foundations of civil society," UN human rights special representative Justice Michael Kirby after his third visit to Cambodia.

"At least some of the conscription this year seems to have been done to flesh out ghosts," UN report on moves by army commanders to recruit soldiers to fill up the numbers with "real" rather than "phantom" troops.

"The attack was preplanned by the KR because they had learned foreigners were on the train," General Sun Bun Sak, after three Westerners were taken hostage by the Khmer Rouge on the train to Sihanoukville.

"We regret that the victims died unjustly, without having weapons but rather cameras in their hands," Hun Sen on the Phnom Vour hostages.

"We cannot and will not accept anything less than the murderers being brought to justice," Australian Foreign Minister Gareth Evans.

"If we shut off the phone for non-payment, they just walk in the office with AK47s and say 'what do you think you're doing?" senior Samart official on the problem of bad telephone debts.

"If he hadn't been killed, we would have sued him," Secretary of State for Information Kieu Kannharith , after the Non Chan's assassination.

"We want to let it be known that our incentives are the most generous in the region, if not the world," CDC chief Chantol Sun, on the media blitz trumpeting Cambodia as the place to invest.

"This is the first great investment in Cambodia," Prince Norodom Ranariddh on a $50 million contract with Asia Pacific Breweries.

"If I travel alone I will face gossip from everybody saying that I am not behaving properly," Miss Cambodia Oung Sopharap explaining why she couldn't go on the prize trip to Singapore without her parents.

"I leave my position with no bitterness...," Finance Minister Sam Rainsy on his sacking.

"I will find other ways to serve my country..." Rainsy again.

"A minister must shut his mouth or leave. I must leave because my conscience doesn't allow me to stay," Foreign Minister Prince Norodom Sirivudh on his resignation.

"Today's Cambodia crawls with greed and corruption at the highest levels," Khmer Institute of Democracy founder Julio Jeldres on the eve of his departure.

"I owe my relatives more than one domlung from when I was first abducted. I have no money to pay them. Now even they want to kill me," Villager Soth Soy after his second kidnapping at the hands of the Khmer Rouge.

"British men always want me to pretend to be their mother. German men want me to pretend to be their daughter. (Australians)... want me sometimes to dress up like a schoolgirl," Phnom Penh prostitute Mai.

"It is true we have the seventh wonder of the world. Vietnam does not have it. But we do have Pol Pot and Vietnam does not. That is my problem," Prince Ranariddh, on Vietnam's rising tourist popularity.

"We have a problem here... I want you to pray now," Texan evangelist Mike Evans (below) trying to calm 30,000 people who wanted miracle cures. They rioted.

"He stays, he dies," Phnom Penh police official predicting Evans' future.

"I will be a soldier all my life unless my head falls off my neck," KR defector Meas Chhun, 55, who had been a guerrilla since the 1950s.

"This is only good for feeding to the cows," Prey Veng farmer Om Samaun on his rice crop this year.

"Only with this can you cope with the situation," Koh Santepheap newspaper publisher Thong Uypang on deciding to carry a gun after one of his journalists was shot dead.

"It would be stupid for us to support the Khmer Rouge, the whole world is watching us now," Thai Ambassador Sakthip Krairiksh.

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