DPP denies intervening in Cambodian politics

09/19/2017 01:40 PM
DPP spokesperson Wang Min-sheng
DPP spokesperson Wang Min-sheng

Taipei, Sept. 19 (CNA) The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) on Tuesday said it has no intention to intervene in Cambodia's domestic affairs after a Cambodian news agency recently accused DPP members of plotting a regime change with the country's main opposition party.

A pro-government English-language online media outlet in Cambodia, Fresh News, recently published articles accusing the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) of receiving training in late 2013 from a Taiwanese "extremist group" it identified as the DPP to engineer regime change.

The news agency published several photos showing DPP members taking photos with CNRP members in Cambodia.

The reports drew the attention of Cambodia's government, which has stepped up its crackdown on dissent recently by forcing the closure of several independent media outlets and jailing an opposition leader on charges of treason.

In view of the government's hard-line position, Taiwanese businesses in the country felt compelled to run front page advertisements in local Chinese-language newspapers for three days stressing they had nothing to do with the alleged claim.

Asked to comment, DPP spokesperson Wang Min-sheng (王閔生) said the party would never interfere in the domestic politics of other countries.

DPP Secretary-General Hung Yao-fu (洪耀福) also personally wrote a letter in both Chinese and English to the Taiwanese business association in Cambodia to clarify the incident.

The Cambodian authorities now understand the DPP's stance on the matter, and the misunderstanding has been clarified, Hung said, citing what he was told by a Taiwanese businessman in the country.

Overseas Community Affairs Council (OCAC) chief Wu Hsin-hsing (吳新興) told local media that the photos were taken more than three years ago during a trip by DPP lawmakers to the country.

Wu contended that the photos were published again in the recent article ahead of national elections in 2018 to influence the election's results.

Meanwhile, Andrew Lee (李憲章), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' deputy spokesman, said Taiwan urged Cambodia's government to "cherish" the contributions of Taiwanese businesses to Cambodia's economic development.

Cambodian authorities should also protect Taiwanese businesses' rights in accordance with local laws, he said.

(By Joseph Yeh)

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