Cambodian PM: Western Sanctions Would Hurt Opposition

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen said Monday that if Western countries impose threatened economic sanctions on his country, it would cause the death of the country's political opposition. Hun Sen, speaking at a road groundbreaking ceremony, was referring mostly to plans by the European Union to cancel an agreement giving imports from Cambodia preferential duty-free status.   The EU began the process of ending the agreement after last July's general election, in which Hun Sen's Cambodian People's Party won all 125 National Assembly seats. The EU, along with other critics, charged the election was unfair and unfree because the sole credible opposition party was dissolved in November 2017 by Cambodia's Supreme Court, generally seen as being under the government's influence.   The U.S. and Germany have already instituted some diplomatic sanctions against Cambodia because of its repressive political climate.   Hun Sen said without elaborating that if Western powers seek to punish Cambodia with sanctions, they would kill the country's opposition.   In an effort to soften his authoritarian image and restore Western approval, Hun Sen has initiated several post-election measures billed as efforts toward political reconciliation. The most notable one allows 118 members of the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party to apply for the lifting of 5-year bans on taking part in politics that were imposed when their party was dissolved.   However, it appears that most of them have no intention to apply, and Hun Sen has said that the ban would not be lifted for those who were uncooperative. One of the party's former leaders, Sam Rainsy, has said he expects Western pressure on Hun Sen's government to be the best hope of restoring democracy.   "I don't want to hear any more threats of imposing sanctions but I want to tell you clearly that your imposing... If you wish to read this full breaking news headline, plus more articles from around Thailand and Asia like, Cambodian PM: Western Sanctions Would Hurt Opposition, simply click on 'Read full story' below, but 1st please give us a 'LIKE' or 'SHARE' before you leave. Thank you Cambodian PM: Western Sanctions Would Hurt Opposition





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Published By: VOA NEWS - Monday, 14 January, 2019



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