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Ranariddh supports referendum

Ranariddh supports referendum

PRINCE Norodom Ranariddh Apr 1 called for a referendum on the monarchy, but said

he has no immediate designs on the throne.

Ranariddh, the son of King Norodom Sihanouk, said he instead wanted to concentrate

on politics.

"No one for the time being can really take care of [my] royalist Funcinpec party...

My objective is to be the next prime minister and the only prime minister,"

he told Reuters in an interview at his home.

Hun Sen recently warned Sihanouk against abdicating and said that if the King entered

politics, the coming elections would be canceled. He also said he would ask Sihanouk

to ban royals from politics unless they renounced their royal titles.

Ranariddh said he would ask Hun Sen to reconsider his position, adding that the most

likely solution to their differences was to organize a national referendum on the

"very serious issue" after the wishes of the King, who recently advised

the government to take up the problem.

"We have to organize a referendum. We have to ask the people's will," he

said, adding he believed there was broad support for the monarchy.