Japanese Delegation Offers Lawmakers Assistance in Electoral Reform Process

A senior Japanese government official on Friday offered his country’s assistance in reforming the country’s electoral system in meetings with National Assembly President Heng Samrin and leaders of the opposition CNRP.

Azuma Koshiishi, vice president of the Japanese House of Councilors, was accompanied on his visit by two other Japanese lawmakers.

The visit comes after a 10-member delegation from Japan came in May to figure out how it can help facilitate electoral reform following last year’s disputed vote.

CNRP Vice President Kem Sokha said the Japanese delegation had expressed its interest in giving assistance once the CNRP and CPP have finalized the reforms—including an overhaul of the electoral commission—agreed to in a July deal between Mr. Hun Sen and Mr. Rainsy.

“They said that if the Cambodia National Rescue Party has big power like this, in the National Assembly, we could have balance in the state’s institutions, especially, legislative, executive, and judiciary powers,” Mr. Sokha said.

Mr. Samrin’s Cabinet chief, Keo Piseth, said Mr. Koshiishi’s visit would strengthen cooperation between the two countries.

Lawmakers from the CPP and CNRP are set to convene on Tuesday to vote for new National Assembly leadership.

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