Prime Minister Hun Sen last week issued a letter telling CPP officials to be ready to prevent a colour revolution should former opposition leader Sam Rainsy return to the Kingdom.
Mr Rainsy, who is currently in exile, has been vowing to return in order to restore democracy and human rights in the country.
In the letter obtained by Khmer Times on Saturday, Mr Hun Sen said authorities must be well prepared.
“I wish to inform His and Her Excellencies [CPP officials] that the convict Sam Rainsy has announced his plan to return to Cambodia in 2019 to renew his plan of a colour revolution,” he said. “He appealed to the armed forces and the people to topple the legitimate Royal Government that was created from a free and fair election that heeds to the principle of a liberal multi-party democracy.”
“His activities have seriously violated the constitution and other existing laws in the Kingdom of Cambodia,” Mr Hun Sen added. “This could lead the country to fall into unfathomed crisis and chaos.”
He noted that whether Mr Rainsy will eventually return or not, authorities must educate citizens in the Kingdom over the consequences of a colour revolution.
“The most important key is that we must better manage the situation across the country,” Mr Hun Sen said. “In order to manage the situation at the sub-national level, you must lead working groups, officials, and members of the armed forces to organise public forums in communes and villages to educate citizens on the consequences of overthrowing a legitimate government through a colour revolution, which is illegal.”
He also said that officials will need to improve public services and rural development for people.
“At the same time, we must work hard to push for internal reforms and increase cooperation in solving issues at the local level,” Mr Hun Sen said.
In a May 10 statement, Mr Rainsy renewed his call for a change of government in a Facebook post to which he attached Mr Hun Sen’s letter.
“Cambodian people must topple Hun Sen’s regime because this regime is illegal and was created from a fake election in 2018,” he said. “The election that had no participation from the CNRP – which represents half of the people in the Kingdom – was a fake election and undermined the principle of democracy.”
Political analyst Hang Vitou yesterday said it is unlikely the CNRP will ever return to politics.
“Attacking each other is strange to me,” Mr Vitou said. “It is the CNRP’s tactics of paving the way for their return.”
“But their return depends on their character,” he added. “The government right now is not likely to let them return.”