Hun Sen Visits France to Be With Ill Wife

Prime Minister Hun Sen traveled to France last week not for his own medical problems, but to visit his ailing wife, Bun Rany, said Om Yentieng, one of the premier’s advisers.

“Hun Sen doesn’t have any health problems, but his wife does,” Om Yentieng said on Monday. He would not disclose the nature of her illness.

Last week, government spokes­man Khieu Kanharith said Hun Sen would undergo medical checkups in France to determine whether he had an illness.

But on Tuesday, Khieu Kanha­rith said the primary purpose of the trip was medical treatment for Bun Rany, who traveled to France on August 9, two days before her husband. Hun Sen might also get a checkup, he added.

A second adviser to Hun Sen, speaking on condition of anony­mity, said the premier’s wife has stones in her gall bladder and an inflamed liver, but that her ailments are not serious.

“She is not in critical condition,” the adviser said. “She can walk.”

Bun Rany, who serves as president of the Cambodian Red Cross, has had several medical problems since 1999. That year, she had her appendix removed at Calmette Hospital in Phnom Penh. In late 2000, Bun Rany went to Thailand for a gall bladder problem.

Doctors removed 60 tiny gallstones from Bun Rany during an operation in Bangkok in early 2001. At the time, Hun Sen said he was considering giving each of his children 10 gallstones apiece to wear in an amulet.

Pum Thantinie, deputy secreta­ry-general of the Cambodian Red Cross, said Bun Rany became ill a week before she left for France. “I don’t know specifically of her sickness, but she has many sicknesses,” she said.

Officials said Hun Sen will re­turn to Cambodia this week. He is scheduled to visit King No­rodom Sihanouk in Beijing la­ter this month.

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