- October 15, 2020 8:13 AM
- March 13, 2021 5:05 AM
- August 22, 2020 7:55 AM
PHNOM PENH – Malaysian government officials have distanced themselves from the visit former opposition leader Sam Rainsy paid to the country.
In a statement issued on May 31, the Malaysian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim “was not informed of [Rainsy’s] arrival to the country.”
“Nonetheless, Sam Rainsy has left Malaysia this morning and no public programme was held during his stay here,” the statement read.
The acting president of the court-dissolved Cambodian National Rescue Party (CNRP) arrived in Malaysia on May 29 and left on May 31, according to his Facebook page.
Rainsy was welcomed by a group of Cambodian Muslims at Kuala Lumpur International Airport and had a meeting with Malaysian MP Wong Chen at the Malaysian Parliament.
Malaysian authorities said they did not allow him and his entourage to hold any political meetings or to stay in the country any longer.
Prime Minister Hun Sen mentioned Rainsy’s visit to Kuala Lumpur during a speech on May 31, saying that PM Anwar had promised him on four occasions that he would not let Cambodia’s opposition leader enter Malaysia.
Cambodia’s Premier then thanked his Malaysian counterpart for expelling him.
Rainsy has told his supporters that he would return to Cambodia via Thailand, taking advantage of the political changes in Thailand, after the July 23 general election.
PM Hun Sen said that he is ready to welcome Rainsy with a BM-21 Grad, referring to a multiple-rocket launcher from the Soviet era.