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Cambodia: Major News Items, 5/28/93 - 6/14/93

Turnout
Out of 4.7 million registered voters, 4.2 million Cambodians went to the polls. (Kathy Chenault, Christian Science Monitor, 6/1/93.) In light of the large turnout, Prince Sihanouk dropped an earlier proposal to include the Khmer Rouge in a reconciliation government. (Indochina Digest, 5/28/93.)

Final Results
A final vote tally was released on June 10. The 120-member national assembly will include 58 members of FUNCINPEC. The CPP (the Phnom Penh government's party) and the Buddhist Liberal Democrats (Son Sann's party) will hold 51 and 10 seats respectively. The right-wing Molinaka party won 1 seat. Commanders of the FUNCINPEC, CPP, and BLD armies agreed to unify their troops under a single leader under the ultimate authority of the elected government. The first meeting of the assembly was scheduled for June 14. (Associated Press, Chicago Tribune, 6/11/93.)

UN Attacked
A Uruguayan peacekeeper was killed and 5 others wounded when a UN convoy was attacked in Kompong Cham. The Khmer Rouge were blamed. (Chicago Tribune, 6/1/93.) On June 7, an estimated 150 - 200 Khmer Rouge guerrillas attacked Pakistani troops in Preah Vihear. Two UN soldiers were injured, and it is believed that some of the guerrillas may have been killed or injured as well. (Associated Press, Chicago Tribune, 6/8/93.)

CPP Claims Irregularities
When vote counting began, it was noted that seals on some ballot boxes were moved. The UN denied a CPP request for new elections in the disputed areas. (Philip Shenon, New York Times, 6/3/93.) While stopping short of refusing to accept the results, the CPP has demanded that an "impartial panel" not affiliated with the UN be formed to investigate their complaints. (Kathy Chenault, Christian Science Monitor, 6/2/93 and 6/8/93.)

Short-Lived Sihanouk Plan
On June 3, Prince Sihanouk announced that he would take charge of a newly-formed coalition government including both FUNCINPEC and CPP officials. The next day, however, Sihanouk dropped the idea after his son Norodom Ranarridh voiced his objections. (Chicago Tribune, 6/4/93.)

Khmer Rouge Threat
On June 8, the Khmer Rouge pledged to renew full-scale war if the Hun Sen government refuses to give up power. The Khmer Rouge did not, however, acknowledge the legitimacy of the elections. (Christian Science Monitor, 6/9/93.)

Factional Splits?
Rumors persist that "hard-liners" in the Phnom Penh government may reject the election results. Meanwhile, Sihanouk announced on June 10 that his son Prince Norodom Chakrapong had split with the CPP with the intention of establishing an "autonomous region" in Prey Veng province. (Associated Press, Chicago Tribune, 6/11/93.)

UN Forces Pull Back
The UN has ordered all nonessential personnel out of Svay Rieng, Kompong Cham, and Prey Veng in the wake of Prince Chakrapong's announcement. Chakrapong stated that he "rejects completely" the election results, and he asked the UN to withdraw its forces from the area. The autonomous zone would include Svay Rieng, Kompong Cham, Prey Veng, Kratie, Stung Treng, Ratanakiri, and Mondolkiri. On June 12, CPP troops in the "seceding" areas reportedly marched on UN offices, firing in the air and ordering workers to leave. (New York Times News Service, Chicago Tribune, 6/13/93.)

Exchange Rate
As of the first week of June, the exchange rate was 3700 riels to one U.S. dollar. (Indochina Digest, 6/4/93.)

 

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