PHNOM PENH —
Prime Minister Hun Sen’s eldest son, Hun Manet, has suggested that the country’s main opposition party was behind protests against his recent visit to Australia.
Speaking on his return on Wednesday, he questioned whether the Cambodia National Rescue Party may have “secretly” orchestrated a protest held in Adelaide during his visit.
Despite the protests, Manet said his visit to Australia and New Zealand, where he met with members of government in both countries, was a success.
Manet said that while the demonstrators had a right to freedom of expression, the protests did not have a clear purpose or meaning and were intended to sow further divisions.
“One questions is what exactly we should do to voice our concerns. Is it talking to each other sitting in parliament, or holding protests?” he asked.
The CNRP has boycotted parliamentary proceedings for several months in response to what it says is are a series of politically motivated legal cases against its members.
However, Eng Chhay Eang, CNRP spokesman, said the party had nothing to do with protests held overseas, preferring peaceful negotiations in Cambodia to agitation abroad.
“People who joined protests abroad, it’s their individual decision and does not represent the party position,” he said.
Meas Ny, a political analyst, said protests such as the one held in Adelaide would add to tensions between the parties.
“As long as they continue to criticize each other, Cambodia will not be united,” he said.