A WEEK of Royal intrigue following Prince Norodom Sirivudh's arrest culminated in
an angry challenge by the King for a suitable candidate for the Throne to be nominated.
In response to a published story citing unnamed political analysts critical of his
"inability" to prevent the fall of government critics, the King issued
a statement Oct 25 saying: "I invite these analysts to present to the Royal
Crown Counsel of Cambodia a Cambodian Prince who deservers to be elected... as the
new constitutional King of Cambodia. "I am ready, at any moment and without
conditions, to abdicate to leave the Cambodian Throne to a Prince more capable than
me to resolve in a suitable manner the problem of the current... regime".
Two days earlier, the King criticised newspaper reports that he was engaged in a
power struggle with the First and Second Prime Ministers.
Protesting "these calumunies and sarcasms," he wrote that he had "never
engaged in political struggle of any kind" since becoming King. The King had
made preparations to leave Cambodia for his Beijing Palace on Nov 25, following the
political crisis over Sirivudh's arrest, but changed his mind and decided to stay.