F’pec, Opposition Sign Agreement on Alliance

Funcinpec President Prince Norodom Ranariddh and opposition party leader Sam Rainsy on Monday signed an agreement to form an “Alliance of Democrats,” joining the two parties in a partnership to negotiate future government, according to a copy of the agreement.

Apart from developing “common strategies” to resolve any crises in government, the agreement binds the two parties to reach solutions together. “Con­sid­ering that resolution of the current political situation, following the general election of July 27, 2003, is vital to the survival of the Cam­bo­dian Nation, Fun­cin­pec and [the] Sam Rainsy Party agree to the terms of this agreement,” it states.

The “protocols of cooperation” agreement also states that neither party will interfere with the internal affairs of the other party, and the agreement will become void if any of the 10 protocols are broken by either party three times.

According to Sam Rainsy Party spokesman Ung Bun-Ang, Prince Ranariddh signed the agreement early Monday morning. The pact was then taken to the Sam Rainsy Party headquarters by Funcinpec National Assembly Secretary-Gen­eral Kol Pheng and was signed by Sam Rainsy later in the day.

“We have been saying we will not support a government with Hun Sen as prime minister,” Ung Bun-Ang said. “The next step is the CPP’s.”

Part of the arrangement in any coalition between the royalists and the opposition would be to share ministerial positions and governorships, officials from both parties said Sunday. How­ever, the agreement signed Mon­day does not address who would share which positions or how those positions will be allocated.

Sam Rainsy, speaking Mon­day at the National Election Com­mittee headquarters, said Funcin­pec officials were preparing resignations for some of the party’s ministerial positions.

But two Funcinpec ministers who attended Monday’s royalist party steering committee meeting denied that any such resignations are going forward or that they were discussed at the steer­ing committee meeting.

(Addi­tion­al reporting by Lor Chandara)


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