Prime Minister Hun Sen yesterday chimed in on an ongoing crisis between the United States and North Korea, calling for “calm” and expressing hope that Cambodia would not be targeted should war break out.
Last week, North Korea launched a missile into the Sea of Japan, demonstrating its capacity to strike anywhere on mainland America. In response, the US and South Korea staged their largest joint military exercise ever, prompting a threat of “retaliation” from North Korea.
“After North Korea launched a missile last week, now they think the missile can reach anywhere on their land. Now they’re beginning to get scared,” Hun Sen said, in an apparent reference to the United States.
“What will the world become now? They keep threatening each other. North Korea threatens the whole world, and they are afraid of North Korea. I do not know what is going to happen,” he said.
“I do not want to say much about those problems, but I hope the world will be calm via dialogue with constructive intentions, and perhaps Cambodia, the small country, is not the target of nuclear attack from North Korea or terrorists,” he continued, adding: “I hope so.”
The US Embassy in Phnom Penh declined to comment.
The Kingdom has historically enjoyed cosy ties with the hermit state dating back to the friendship between Kim Il-sung, the founder of North Korea, and the late King Father Norodom Sihanouk.
Government spokesman Phay Siphan said yesterday Cambodia “wants to be free from weapons of mass destruction”, and noted Cambodia often condemns the North’s aggression.