Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Kingdom no ‘banana republic’: government

Kingdom no ‘banana republic’: government

Kingdom no ‘banana republic’: government

A strongly worded statement disseminated yesterday by the Foreign Affairs Ministry decried diplomats’ criticism of the July 28 national election, and asked them to stay out of the Kingdom’s internal affairs.

“[Cambodia] is indeed not a banana republic,” reads the statement written by ministry spokesman Koy Kuong. “Cambodia can never accept the arrogant behaviour of [an] ambassador from any foreign diplomatic mission, whatever the country he represents.”

The statement was dated Monday and issued shortly after the United States Embassy clarified that Ambassador William Todd’s attendance at the newly formed National Assembly’s inaugural session on Monday was not an endorsement “of any election outcome or any political party”.

Kuong’s letter defended the government’s handling of allegations by the Cambodia National Rescue Party and election monitors of widespread election fraud.

All 55 elected CNRP lawmakers boycotted Monday’s session.

Contacted by telephone yesterday, Kuong declined to say whether the letter took aim at any particular foreign mission.

“We had a reason we chose to send this [letter] yesterday,” Kuong said. When asked by a Post reporter who the letter was directed towards, Kuong replied: “I know that you already know.”

Officials from the US, Australian and several other embassies did not respond to emailed requests for comment about the letter.

The statement goes on to remind foreign diplomats of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, which stipulates they have a duty to avoid interfering with other countries’ internal affairs.

While the Foreign Affairs Ministry statement invokes the Vienna Convention, political analyst Kem Ley said the government broke the 1991 Paris Peace Accords by convening the National Assembly without any opposition members present.

Foreign diplomats in Cambodia have a duty to promote democracy here, Ley added.

“If they are working here, they must insure they are working with a democratic government,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hun Sen to the rescue

    Cambodia has won praise for allowing passengers of the MS Westerdam cruise ship to dock at Preah Sihanouk port, thanks to Prime Minister Hun Sen’s humanitarian act. In a message via Twitter on Wednesday, the director-general of the World Health Organisation Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesu

  • PM orders immediate action against ‘sexy’ live streamers

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Monday ordered immediate action against women who live stream their sales pitches on Facebook wearing revealing clothing. The prime minister said the practice erodes traditional Cambodian values and disgraces women. Hun Sen gave the order to officials attending the Cambodian

  • Trump tweets praise for Kingdom docking ship

    Cambodia continues to earn praise for its humanitarian act of allowing the MS Westerdam cruise ship with more than 2,200 passengers and crew on board to dock at the Preah Sihanouk port. The praise this time comes from none other than US President Donald Trump. “Thank

  • Tourist area greenlit in Sihanoukville

    The National Committee for Coastal Management and Development will coordinate with relevant ministries over the establishment of a billion-dollar tourist area named Neak Reach in Preah Sihanouk province after it was proposed by the Ministry of Tourism. The Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and

  • PM issues human rights circular

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday issued a circular urging officials at all levels to work more closely with the Cambodia Human Rights Committee (CHRC) to protect human rights in Cambodia. In the circular, Hun Sen urged all institutions to collaborate closely with CHRC, including

  • Organic vegetable retailer unveils QR code scheme for origin source

    Organic vegetable retailer Natural Agriculture Village has introduced QR codes on its product packaging, which will allow consumers to see where their produce comes from. Natural Agriculture Village president Bun Sieng, who is also a member of local distributor Green Gold, told The Post on