CPP spokesman Sok Eysan yesterday responded to a resolution made by international political group Centrist Democrat International last month urging the European Union to “treat Cambodia fairly” in its Everything-but-arms trade status review.
On April 10, 2019, CDI issued a resolution urging the EU to consider Cambodia’s troubled past, and how far it has gotten with the help of trade schemes such as the EBA.
“We took note with satisfaction the Cambodian Government’s efforts to implement the EU’s demands and conditions, including 15 conventions under the framework of the United Nations and International Labour Organisation corresponding to the expansion of political and economic development, labour rights, as well as freedom in Cambodia,” it said in the resolution.
Mr Eysan, who is also a senator, yesterday said he strongly supports CDI’s resolution.
“I think they speak the truth and their voice is from the majority. They highlighted the unjust treatment of Cambodia,” he said. “Most of its members are from poor countries, so they understand the difficulties of a country that was under oppression and colonialism.”
According to the CDI resolution, the EBA has contributed significantly to the foundation of democracy in Cambodia, and the suspension of the EBA could prove to be detrimental to Cambodia’s democratic progress.
“Cambodians have suffered enough; they deserve to live in peace, with prosperity and happiness,” it said. “We wish to see democracy in Cambodia thrive and consolidate the economy with the understanding and support of the international community.”
CDI was founded in 1961 and it currently has 94 political parties as members from Europe, Latin America, Africa and the Asia-Pacific region.
In July last year, the CPP was unanimously approved as CDI’s Asia-Pacific region vice president during a meeting in Brussels.
Kin Phea, director-general of the International Relations Institute at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, yesterday said the resolution was based on facts.
“I think what they said is reflective of the facts in Cambodia,” Mr Phea said, adding that the EU does not scrutinise other EBA countries in the region over their own issues of human rights and democracy. “They treat Cambodia unfairly compared to other countries in the region like Laos and Myanmar.”
“Is the democracy better in these countries than in Cambodia?” he added. “I think each country has their own laws to ensure human rights, political stability, security and peace.”
The EU in February launched a six month-long period of intensive monitoring and engagement that could lead to the temporary suspension of the EBA.