SAM Rainsy will neither confirm nor deny that King Norodom Sihanouk has provided
personal security for him.
Sources say non-Khmer bodyguards, apparently
North Korean, have been seen with Rainsy on at least one occasion
King Sihanouk uses bodyguards provided by North
Rainsy, asked about the matter during at interview at his Phnom
Penh home, replied: "They are not with me, living in this house."
to comment, he said: "Yes, the King has expressed concern about my security. Has
he taken any special measures? I do not know. I cannot confirm, I cannot deny
"I know that many people are watching me closely and they belong to
different organizations, even those opposing me."
It has been widely
reported that the First Prime Minister, Prince Norodom Ranariddh, recently made
what he later termed "a joke" that Rainsy's wife would soon be a
Meanwhile, Rainsy has confirmed that he choose to be out of
Cambodia when the National Assembly voted on the 1995 Budget on Dec 30 after
Ranariddh "gently but insistently" asked him not to be present.
adamant that he did not leave the country under threat to his life, but reliable
sources maintain that he has told Funcinpec MPs that it was because he was
Two BLDP MPs, Kem Sokha and Son Chhay - both regular critics
of the government - said this week that MPs were operating in an increasing
climate of threats and intimidation.
They cited First Prime Minister
Prince Norodom Ranariddh's naming of them "enemies of the government" in a
public speech recently.
They also referred to a Dec 31 speech by Second
Prime Minister Hun Sen in which he warned that people who opposed the government
- particularly in regard to seeking foreign military aid - faced demonstrations
at their houses by the military and police.
"The government will find it
difficult to stop them because they are armed with guns," Hun Sen said in the
Son Chhay - who said had recently received an anonymous telephone
threat and been followed by two uniformed men on motorcycles - said he had also
been openly threatened by military officials including Co-Defense Minister Tea
"To threaten a MP verbally that way is not acceptable," he
"Under a free democracy any kind of threat is unacceptable,
especially from top leaders."