Cambodian prince on hunger strike over poll results

Phnom Penh, Sep 20 (IANS) A Cambodian prince, the cousin of King Norodom Sihamon, went on hunger strike Friday to protest Prime Minister Hun Sen's victory in the disputed July elections, media reported.

"I am on hunger strike until there is a solution to render justice to the people who are the voters," Prince Sisowath Thomico was quoted as saying by the South China Morning Post.

Prince Thomico is a senior member of the opposition Cambodian National Rescue Party (CNRP) which won 55 seats against the ruling Cambodian People's Party's (CPP) 68 seats in the national polls.

He accused the CPP of "staging a cold coup" and seeking to create a conflict between the people and the king.

The opposition has rejected the tally, alleging widespread vote rigging, and has warned it will boycott the opening of parliament Monday unless the "irregularities" are addressed.

"We will not attend the meeting on September 23," opposition leader Sam Rainsy told reporters here.

Hun Sen, 61, who has presided over the government for 28 years, has held several meetings with Rainsy in the past week to discuss the political stalemate.

The two sides remain at odds over the opposition's demand for the creation of an independent "truth committee" to investigate the polls.


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