King Denies Kingmaking

King Norodom Sihanouk on Wednesday pronounced himself “stupefied” at opposition leader Sam Rainsy’s claim that he may want his wife Queen Monineath or their son Prince Norodom Siha­moni to assume the throne.

Sam Rainsy told reporters Tuesday that the King told him in their Monday meeting that the Queen might succeed him.

However, the King denied saying any such thing in the meeting. “To Sam Rainsy who told me that, after me, the Queen…would be a good Regent, I respon­ded that neither my wife nor our son Noro­dom Sihamoni respectively were candidates of the re­gen­cy…” the King wrote in a statement. The King further noted that he has no constitutional right to determine the succession.

Sam Rainsy Party member Son Chhay said he “presumed” the press had misquoted Rainsy. “We just got the feeling from what the King said who he thought would be a good successor,” Son Chhay said Wed­nes­day.


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