The royalist Funcinpec Party has asked the Communist Party of China for assistance in the upcoming 2018 national election.
Wang Weiguang, president of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and Central Committee of Communist Party of China, met yesterday with Prince Norodom Ranariddh, president of Funcinpec.
“I asked China to help and support us for the upcoming election,” Prince Ranariddh told the press after the meeting at the Intercontinental Hotel.
Mr Weiguang declined to speak with reporters, but Prince Ranariddh said that Mr Weiguang promised to study the request and relay it to Chinese president Xi Jinping.
“Funcinpec is now Cambodia’s second party but it is very poor,” Prince Ranariddh said.
The prince also told Mr Weiguang that Funcinpec had become the second political party in the kingdom after the Supreme Court dissolved the opposition CNRP.
“I think China always considered the royal family led by the late King Norodom Sihanouk as close friends,” he said.
Yoeung Sotheara, legal monitor at Comfrel, said it wasn’t a surprising move, since Funcinpec and the Communist Party of China had good relations with King Norodom Sihanouk.
Mr Sotheara said Funcinpec is now lacking capital and human resources for contesting next year’s general election.
“It is hard for Funcinpec to get support because the party suffered public criticism in the past, and has now taken seats that were reallocated following the CNRP dissolution,” he said.
Funcinpec took 41 seats out of the 55 reallocated from the CNRP in the National Assembly.