No Hun Sen-Sam Rainsy meeting after King returns

The hopes of pundits that the King’s return would lead to a meeting between top ruling party and opposition leaders were dampened yesterday when Prime Minister Hun Sen and opposition leader Sam Rainsy all but ignored each another at Phnom Penh International Airport, the Phnom Penh Post reported.


About 50 high-ranking government, opposition and royal palace officials gathered in the rain to greet King Norodom Sihamoni as he arrived from Beijing.

According to opposition officials, not even a nod was shared between Rainsy and Hun Sen, ostensibly because the logistics of the crowd prevented them coming face to face.

CNRP leaders have been insisting this week that they would like the King’s intervention to help solve the political impasse – though the specifics of what they would be prepared to concede have been left ambiguous.

On whether a meeting between the two parties was in the offing, Rainsy said yesterday the prospects for such a discussion would emerge as the situation develops.

Although the King has pledged he will preside over the opening session of the National Assembly on September 23, the CNRP has announced it will boycott the session barring an independent investigation into election irregularities.

The CNRP has called on its supporters to join continuous demonstrations centred in Phnom Penh’s Freedom Park from September 15-17 to call for such a probe.