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Peace is fragile, Hun Sen says

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Hun Sen speaks at the inauguration of the Lower Sesan II dam last year. Hong Menea

Peace is fragile, Hun Sen says

Prime Minister Hun Sen said peace in Cambodia remains fragile because of ongoing meddling in the Kingdom’s internal affairs by foreign powers.

In a written statement on the International Day of Peace on Friday, the prime minister called on all citizens to work with the government to thwart outside “tricks” meant to destabilise the Kingdom.

Hun Sen wrote that the global political situation has made achieving peace difficult in Southeast Asia and the world.

“Although we obtained full peace after implementing the Win-Win policy in 1998, Cambodia’s peace remains fragile because of the repeated meddling in our internal affairs by outsiders,” the letter read, referring to the agreement that ended in the Kingdom’s civil war.

‘People’s will’

Hun Sen continued that the Cambodian government must protect peace and stability at any cost, even in the face of international pressure and threats to impose sanctions under the pretext of democracy and human rights.

“We already experienced the hardship of war over three decades, the hardship of economic sanctions and the ignorance of some countries about our government, which was born from the people’s will,” he wrote.

The prime minister thanked the Cambodian people for giving their full support to the government to maintain peace and continued development of the nation.

Council of Ministers spokesman Phay Siphan did not identify the countries that Hun Sen accused of meddling in Cambodian affairs.

However, he said the unnamed countries interfered with Cambodian decisions and are against the election process.

As an example, he cited recent demands that the government oppose the Supreme Court’s ruling on the dissolution of the Cambodia National Rescue Party [CNRP] and the subsequent election results.

“Those countries are against the election process and our democracy, even though officially, the National Election Committee [NEC] has shown that the majority of the people acknowledge, value and believe in Samdach Hun Sen,” he said.

Criticism for Cambodia’s July 29 national elections came from the US, Australia, France, Canada and the European Union, which represents 28 countries. However, ties with at least some EU countries have strengthened with Germany and France having since sent Hun Sen congratulatory letters.

Superpowers India, China and Russia were also among the first to join the many Asean member countries that congratulated him on his Cambodia People’s Party victory.

The EU has called on the new government to restore multi-party democracy, drop charges against opposition leaders Kem Sokh and Sam Rainsy, as well as return communal seats to the CNRP

US Embassy to Cambodia spokesman Arend Zwartjes declined comment.

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