PHNOM PENH —
Prime Minister Hun Sen has encouraged Cambodians to read a book about the leadership style of Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Hun Sen launched the Khmer-language book, titled “Xi Jinping: The Governance of China”, on Tuesday morning at the Peace Palace, his cabinet office.
Jiang Jianguo, a spokesman for the Chinese government who attended the event, said the book was largely a compilation of Xi’s speeches and “visions,” which included a desire to serve the people of China, organizing political society, and egalitarianism.
Hun Sen, who in recent years has grown increasingly close to China, Cambodia’s biggest aid donor and lender, said the book was instructive and Xi’s leadership style could teach Cambodians about “good governance”.
The book launch comes after the foreign ministry released a scathing rebuke of United States policy towards Cambodia, in which it accused critical media, NGOs and the opposition of conspiring with foreign powers to foment regime change.
Chheang Vannarith, a Southeast Asia analyst, said the book launch was a further indication of Cambodia’s developing “special relationship” with China.
Cambodia “wants to give a signal to the West that the West’s interference in the country will not influence or change anything, because China is an important strategic partner,” he said.
In October, Xi visited Cambodia and signed more than 30 agreements related to development, investment and trade in his first visit to the country as president and head of state.
During the visit, China agreed to cancel some $90 million of debt and supply more military aid and loans.