Prime Minister Links ‘Culture of Dialogue’ to ‘Win-Win Policy’

Prime Minister Hun Sen said Sunday that the current “culture of dialogue” between the CPP and the opposition CNRP is the latest phase of his “win-win policy,” which he credits for bringing peace to Cambodia in the 1990s, according to a ruling party spokesman.

Mr. Hun Sen gave a four-hour speech at the CPP’s headquarters in Phnom Penh to about 100 high-ranking party members Sunday, said Chhim Phal Virun, a CPP spokesman who attended the closed-door meeting.

“Samdech [Mr. Hun Sen] ended the fight with the former Khmer Rouge because he used the win-win policy by the end of 1998 and early 1999,” Mr. Phal Virun said, outlining the speech by Mr. Hun Sen. “If we had not implemented the win-win policy, the war would have continued.”

Mr. Phal Virun said the prime minister decided to focus his speech on the win-win policy because of its relevance to the culture of dialogue, touted by Mr. Hun Sen and opposition leader Sam Rainsy as heralding a new era of peace in Cambodia’s political arena.

“Samdech Hun Sen took this opportunity to talk about the win-win policy because we are now going toward peace by working on the culture of dialogue,” Mr. Phal Virun said. “That’s why we took this time to talk about the win-win policy and why we have reached this point now.”

In the months following the disputed 2013 national election, government forces killed at least seven people as part of efforts to suppress protests.

Mr. Hun Sen has long celebrated the success of his win-win policy and the government announced plans this year to begin building a memorial to it in Phnom Penh.

In a speech in Pailin province in January 2013, Mr. Hun Sen said the win-win policy’s three main points—ensuring jobs, safety and security of property—were key to destroying his opponents without using violence, according to a report by state-run news agency AKP.

“Thanks to these three important points, we can destroy a political and military organization without losing even a bullet,” AKP reported him as saying.

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