Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Don’t call it a ‘coup’, premier says

Don’t call it a ‘coup’, premier says

Don’t call it a ‘coup’, premier says

Prime Minister Hun Sen yesterday once again warned his one-time rivals and present party officials not to refer to the bloody factional clashes that took place in Phnom Penh over July 5-6, 1997, and left the Cambodian People’s Party with a stranglehold on power, as a coup.

Speaking to police officials at the Police Academy School in Kandal province’s Kean Svay district, the premier addressed audience members Serey Kosal, Ly Thuch and Keang Vang, who at the time were senior military officials in royalist party Funcinpec.

The three defected to the CPP after the 2008 elections.

“Do not accuse me of leading a coup,” said Hun Sen, adding that officials had to be careful of their comments because of the video evidence that CPP troops had taken at the time.

In 1997, troops loyal to then Second Prime Minister Hun Sen and First Prime Minister Prince Norodom Ranariddh, who led Funcinpec, engaged in a fierce street battle in Phnom Penh.

CPP troops emerged the victor, and Prince Norodom Ranariddh went into exile in France.

The Hun Sen-led CPP has won every subsequent election.

Deputy prime minister and secretary general of Funcinpec Nhek Bunchhay could not be reached for comment.

Sam Rainsy Party spokesman Yim Sovann said the SRP considers the events of 1997 a coup led by CPP.

MOST VIEWED

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears

    The government has ordered all domestic and international internet traffic in the Kingdom to pass through a Data Management Centre (DMC) that has been newly created by the state-owned Telecom Cambodia, in a move some have claimed is an attempt to censor government critics. Spokesman

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh