Funcinpec President Prince Norodom Ranariddh claimed Thursday that the ambassadors of Singapore, France and the US have encouraged him to continue cooperating with the CPP for the sake of Cambodia’s political stability.
The prince said he met with Singaporean Ambassador Lawrence Anderson and French Ambassador Yvon Roe d’Albert separately Wednesday, and with US Ambassador Joseph Mussomeli on Thursday.
“All the ambassadors who I met, they wanted political stability in Cambodia through the continuation of the strengthening of the two parties’ cooperation,” Prince Ranariddh said in a speech that was broadcast on Funcinpec’s Ta Prohm radio.
“I told the three ambassadors that Funcinpec and myself intend to maintain cooperation between the CPP and Funcinpec, and good relations between Hun Sen and I,” he said.
Prince Ranariddh said Mussomeli asked him why he had not fired royalist officials who are opposing him. “I told him I could not do that because Funcinpec hopes that as president I will unite the party,” he said. The prince said he told Anderson: “When I wanted to shake hands, [Hun Sen] pulled his hand away and slapped my face.”
US Embassy spokesman Jeff Daigle said Mussomeli’s meeting with Prince Ranariddh was routine, and that the ambassador asked questions to assess the situation. He declined further comment.
French Embassy spokeswoman Claude Abily declined to say whether the French ambassador encouraged Prince Ranariddh to cooperate with the CPP for the sake of stability.
“The prince told the ambassador he remained attached to the agreement of 2004,” she said, referring to the coalition government agreement between Funcinpec and the CPP. Singaporean Embassy officials could not be reached for comment.
Hun Sen’s adviser Om Yentieng said the prime minister is waiting for actions rather than words from Prince Ranariddh before their relationship can be restored. “We don’t want only words,” he said.
(Additional reporting by James Welsh)