Cambodian Opposition MPs Enter Parliament, Call for Effective Dialogue

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Sam Rainsy speaking to reporters after attending his first parliamentary meeting since disputed elections a year ago, Aug 8, 2014.
Sam Rainsy speaking to reporters after attending his first parliamentary meeting since disputed elections a year ago, Aug 8, 2014.

Lawmakers from the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) attended their first parliamentary meeting on Friday after a year-long boycott, calling for an effective dialogue with Prime Minister Hun Sen’s government to tackle the country’s problems.

CNRP leader Sam Rainsy led the 55 lawmakers from the opposition in taking their seats in the National Assembly following a July 22 agreement with Hun Sen that broke a one-year political deadlock arising from disputed July 2013 general elections.

“It’s time Cambodian politicians work together to build a dialogue culture in the spirit of mutual respect for the interest of peace in the country,” Sam Rainsy said, addressing the lower house of parliament.

Sam Rainsy expressed his appreciation to Hun Sen for his efforts to bring an end to the country’s political crisis through a compromise in which the government agreed to adopt electoral reforms while the CNRP ended its boycott of parliament.

Sam Rainsy said that rather than place emphasis on winning or losing, what was more important was “seeking good ideas to help protect and rebuild the country.”

The CNRP had earlier refused to recognize the result of the 2013 elections, saying it was robbed of victory by Hun Sen’s Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) amid accusations of rigging and other malpractices blamed on the government-appointed National Election Committee, which organized the polls.


Hun Sen said the two parties could have ended the political crisis much earlier if the CNRP was prepared to compromise.

He said that they were near to forging an agreement in September last year which was similar to the pact signed last month.

The prime minister also expressed the hope that the CNRP would refrain from whipping up anti-Vietnam sentiment for political gain.

The CNRP has accused Hun Sen of being a "puppet" of neighboring Vietnam. Many Cambodians are wary of Vietnam’s influence over their country’s affairs.

An estimated 1.7 million people, or one in four Cambodians, died in what came to be called the “Killing Fields” after the ultra-Communist Khmer Rouge took power in 1975. The regime was unseated when Vietnam invaded the country four years later.

Vietnam occupied the country for a decade before withdrawing its troops and signing the Paris Peace Agreement to restore sovereignty and stability to Cambodia.

“I hope that the CPP would not be accused of being a Vietname puppet. If you regard me as a Vietnamese [puppet], it means that we are enemies,” Hun Sen said.

Sam Rainsy did not respond.

The opposition leader was convicted and ordered jailed in 2009 for the removal of a temporary post demarcating Cambodia’s border with Vietnam and for publishing a false map of the border with Vietnam, charges that were seen as politically motivated.

He was given a pardon by the country's king, enabling him to return from self-exile in France just before the July elections.

Reported by Yeang Socheameta for RFA’s Khmer Service. Translated by Samean Yun. Written in English by Parameswaran Ponnudurai.

Comments (6)


from Cambodai

It give a lot of ideas for me when i read the new. Thanks for great job! However, I just found out that the word "wory" sounds wrong. It should be "worry". If it is rihgt, let give me an excuse.

Aug 11, 2014 04:48 AM


from Wellington

No anyone trust this CCP communist syndrome in the last 5 decades .The entire khmer pple want to change this old bastard from the office .Too old...too dumbass...too LZ and too slow in reforms .How all u guy belief this ruthless dictator who doesn't belief in any religion...or god in his whole life "communism disbelief all kind of voodoo religious scheme " , there only one their god is sermons or worship communist party anything else...believe .

Aug 09, 2014 12:29 PM

Pol Pot

It comes out. "CNRP would refrain from whipping up anti-Vietnam sentiment for political gain."

It's always easy to look for a fiend then you can instigate the gullible people as you like. Rainsy gets fat (look at his cheek) and is a populist and as dangerous as Pol Pot who started his slaughtering genocide with "Anti-Vietnam" campaign.

The more I look at Rainsy's face, the more I see the resemblance of Pol Pot. Is Rainsy an incarnation of this Khmer Hitler?

Btw, if the Vietcong pigs didn't involve into the slaughtering Rampage of Pol Pot, Rainsy's skeletons lay somewhere in one of the Killing Fields.

Aug 09, 2014 03:41 AM

Anonymous Reader

Tell that to the people living along the border who lost their land. Incidences like these cause Khmer to feel victimize by foreign invaders. I don't think these invaders are fiends. And these people know what's right and wrong, they are far from gullible. And this corrupt government ignored their cries, they wouldn't address the problem, instead, they blocked people from going to inspect the border. This is the source of anti-Vietnamese.

I don't care what Sam Rainsy looks like, I do care what he does. I judge people by their actions, and Hun Sen 30 years old evil activities certainly have created lots of critics.

btw, did you see Sam Rainsy pulled the border post in the middle of rice field? Hun Sen should have done instead of Sam Rainsy. A leader suppose to defend your country, not surrender to an enemy.

Aug 11, 2014 10:02 AM

Anonymous Reader

It's ancient tradition for Khmer leaders pay their neighbors(or invaders) for helping them fight the enemy. This is how Khmer empire shrank.

Aug 11, 2014 10:07 AM

Pol Pot

Of course, nobody admits that he/she's gullible. So you do. You don't care Rainsy said and did? LOL.

Pol Pot promised the Khmer a moneyless, casteless and "Vietless" society. And the "non-gullible" like you didn't care what he said and did. And the outcome? Without the "fiend Vietnamese" Cambodia was probably as empty as the mond. Gosh! How underdeveloped the Khmer are? Even China stood on the side of the Khmer Hitler and tried to prevent the Viet pigs to uproot this man-slaughterer Pop Pot.

Btw, I bet that this reincarnated Pol-Pot has a French Passport. And, I won't wonder, that this man belongs the the ruling caste since generation. If you say you aren't gullible then you must be his stooge or his faithful disciple. Or worst of all a Pol Pot believer!

Aug 11, 2014 01:16 PM


Hey Pol Pot, go back to your grave. You're supposed to be dead, ... ! I said I don't care what he looks like. But I do care what he does. Read it again! Did you fail reading class, ... !!

[This comment has been edited by RFA Editorial staff per our Terms of Use]

Aug 12, 2014 07:00 AM


Obviously the ... can't read.

[This comment has been edited by RFA Editorial staff per our Terms of Use]

Aug 12, 2014 06:59 AM

Anonymous Reader

"I hope that the CPP would not be accused of being a Vietname puppet. If you regard me as a Vietnamese [puppet], it means that we are enemies,” Hun Sen said.

I like to ask Hun Sen about the Golf Course he built on Cambodia-Vietnam border. Hun Sen proudly said that half of the golf course is on Cambodia side, and the other half is on Vietnam side.

My question is this. Why have a golf course straddled on border between the 2 countries? What is the purpose of this? Are you trying to blur the line between the 2 countries?

Aug 08, 2014 11:36 PM

Anonymous Reader

Words are cheap, actions are what people waiting for.

All eyes are on the CPP especially. How much reform are they really want to make if any. Adapt with time or die in history. Only time will tell.

Aug 08, 2014 10:23 PM

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