Visiting Cambodian leader Hun Sen indicated Thursday that he will discuss with King Norodom Sihanouk the possible return of ousted First Prime Minister Norodom Ranariddh and his participation in the country’s general election next May.
Hun Sen, the second prime minister, made the remarks in talks with Foreign Minister Keizo Obuchi and other Japanese political leaders.
Obuchi told Hun Sen that Ranariddh and exiled members of parliament should be allowed to participate in the election, to be held next May 23, according to Foreign Ministry officials. It will be the first election in Cambodia since the U.N.-sponsored polls of 1993.
Hun Sen reaffirmed that the participation of the exiled parliament members in the election would be guaranteed, the officials said. Hun Sen said he seeks to resolve the issue of the return and participation in the election of Ranariddh by cooperating with Sihanouk, Ranariddh’s father, they said.
He said he will issue a communique on how his government will deal with Ranariddh when he holds a news conference today, according to the officials. When he met earlier in the day with Yukio Hatoyama, a leader of the Democratic Party of Japan, Hun Sen also reportedly mentioned the possibility of granting amnesty to Ranariddh.