Prime Minister Hun Sen touts the integrity of former Thai prime ministers Thaksin Shinawatra and his sister Yingluck, recalling that despite being ousted, neither of them had attempted to call on foreigners to apply pressure on Thailand. He contrasted their behaviour with that of some Cambodian opposition politicians.

While meeting with nearly 20,000 workers at the Royal Group Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone (PPSEZ) on May 27, Hun Sen also warned that some extremist groups apparently intend to spearhead a colour revolution.

“Personally, I appreciate the conduct of former Thai prime ministers Thaksin Shinawatra and Yingluck Shinawatra. Even though both siblings were ousted in coups and now live abroad in exile, neither of them has ever called for foreigners to cut aid to their country, suggested a boycott of Thai products nor tried to bring an end to investments in Thailand,” he said.

“I never imagined that an extremist group in Cambodia would call for sanctions on the Kingdom, a boycott of our products or tried to dissuade people from investing here. These are all attempts to attack the rapid growth of the Cambodian economy. Let’s wait and see what fate awaits these ill wishers,” he added.

He noted that despite political issues, no Thai politician has ever tried to harm the economy of their own country. He also pointed out that investment in Cambodia remained high, and was even increasing, despite the calls from the opposition.

Hun Sen also reiterated that he would not tolerate any group who attempted to incite the public or the armed forces to rise up against the government, noting that this would surely plunge the Kingdom back into civil war.

He also requested that relevant authorities continue to investigate any suggestion of colour revolution activities against the government and quash any such plans.

He also issued a stern warning to any foreign individuals or organisations that sponsored such activities, telling them to cease doing so immediately.

“We will search for the roots of any such group and determine the source of their funding, as we will not allow the country to be destroyed. What could drive such activities, when we all enjoy the peace that we have today? I will never allow anyone to threaten the precious peace,” he said.

Yang Peou, secretary-general of the Royal Academy of Cambodia, said on May 27 that appealing to members of the armed forces to rise up against the government is illegal and immoral.

“The armed forces are the tools that the government uses to protect public order and the stability of the nation,” he said.

“When calls for armed rebellion are made, it is clear that they desire bloodshed. A coup is normally carried out by military or police commanders, and signals the breakdown of social security,” he added.

He noted that the prime minister has been forced to the issue warnings to counter insurgencies or extremist groups several times, in order to ensure the Kingdom continues to enjoy its comprehensive peace and social order.