Prince Sirivudh Agrees With Retired King: Royals Should Quit Politics

Prince Norodom Sirivudh told reporters Thursday that he supported retired King Noro­dom Sihanouk’s suggestion that royals should quit politics.

On Feb 2, the retired King suggested on his Web site that royals should be removed from politics altogether.

Prime Minister Hun Sen has also since proposed that the royals could initiate their own political retirement.

“We would like to support this highly royal thought,” Prince Sirivudh said of his half-brother Norodom Sihanouk’s proposal.

“But this is up to the individual royal member to decide,” he added.

Prince Sirivudh made the comments after being interviewed at Phnom Penh Municipal Court over a lawsuit filed by Funcinpec against Prince Norodom Ranarid­dh, accusing the former Funcin­pec president of selling off the party’s headquarters for personal benefit.

Prince Sirivudh declined comment on his court visit.

But In­vestigating Judge Ke Sak­horn said the prince said he could not remember any details of the sale because he has been sick with diabetes, Ke Sakhorn said.

Until recently, Prince Sirivudh had been a key figure in Cam­bodia’s political scene, serving as acting president of Fun­cin­pec and as co-minister of interior and deputy prime minister.

He resigned from the Funcin­pec position in March 2006, after the National Assembly voted to remove both his senior government positions.

Prince Sisowath Thomico, leader of the Sangkum Jatiniyum Front Party, said royals should not quit politics.

“Cambodia is not independent yet, so the royal family members have a duty to continue in politics until it is independent,” he said by telephone, though he declined to elaborate on how the country is not independent.

Om Yentieng, an advisor to Prime Minister Hun Sen, called on Prince Thomico to clarify his claim.

“So is the Prince [Thomico] going to crusade for the independence for Cambodia?” Om Yen­tieng asked.

 

 

 

 

 

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