“We have sought international intervention too much,” he told “Hello VOA” on Thursday. “Why don’t we solve our domestic problems ourselves?”
Internal problems like human rights abuse, land grabs and restrictions on basic freedoms should not be insurmountable nationally and should not require outside help, he said. Last month, US President Barack Obama urged Prime Minster Hun Sen to improve the country’s rights record and free “political prisoners.”
“As a Cambodian, I’m not so happy the President Barack Obama gave our prime minister a lecture on human rights as soon as he got off the plane,” Lao Monghay said. “But it was necessary that he do so, because we have not been able to solve the problem by ourselves.”
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Opposition spokesman Yim Sovann defended the practice of seeking outside help, especially because Cambodia has the Paris Peace Accords, which were forged multi-laterally to end fighting in the country and to establish a modern democracy.
“Most importantly, in a world where there are serious human rights violations, it is necessary to find an international solution,” he said. “No country can solves its problems alone.”