King Reacts to ‘Absent Cambodians’ Slight

In an apparent reaction to com­ments by Prime Minister Hun Sen regarding Cambodians who  maintain homes overseas, King Norodom Siha­nouk said on Friday he takes no joy in traveling to China for medical treatment.

Neither Hun Sen nor the King have directed their clashing comments at specific individuals.

But the King’s letter was pen­ned following Hun Sen’s comments on Wednesday in which the premier scolded Cambodians who hold foreign passports and leave the country whenever the political situation turns tense.

“This house does not belong to me, but the People’s Republic of Chi­na,” the King stated.

“I never frequent shops, restaurants or go on sightseeing visits…. I only stay in the hospital to get medical examinations and treatment from great doctors and professors,” the King said.

Opening a bridge in Kratie prov­ince on his 53rd birthday on Fri­day, Hun Sen said he was a year younger that everyone believed.

His date of birth was mistyped when he became Foreign Mini­ster said Hun Sen, who also revealed that April 4 only represented the day he joined the resistance movement to defend then-Prince Sihanouk after the Lon Nol coup d’etat in 1970.

“I was born on the 15th day of the full moon in the year of the dragon, in 1952. So If anyone casts a spell on me, it will not work,” said a chuckling Hun Sen in his speech, which was aired on Ap­sara Radio.

For superstitious Cambodians, knowing someone’s date and time of birth is essential for casting malevolent spells.

Related Stories

Latest News

The Weekly DispatchA new weekly newsletter from The Cambodia Daily delivering news, analysis and opinion to your inbox. Published every Friday at 11:30am. Sign up today.