Prime Minister Hun Sen reiterated that Cambodia was voting internationally to condemn the Russian invasion of Ukraine even as Cambodia had been lobbied to abstain.
“We have clarified our stance clearly,” Hun Sen said during a speech at a road inauguration. “We cannot abstain and we do not support any invasion from one country to another country — this is our absolute stance.”
The issue had come up on Wednesday during a discussion with Foreign Affairs Minister Prak Sokhonn in relation to the 144th assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union, currently being held in Indonesia.
The union was having a similar vote to the U.N. General Assembly earlier this month approving a resolution demanding that Russia immediately cease its invasion of Ukraine.
The war there has now continued there for almost a month, with thousands of casualties.
Hun Sen said the Inter-Parliamentary Union was preparing to issue a similar statement, and had taken a vote during the morning.
“There was a country who lobbied us to vote in abstention. We cannot do this,” Hun Sen said, without naming the country in his speech. “This is not a small thing. It is a story that creates bad habits in the world. The strong attack the weak, so in the future, if the strong attack us, who will help us?”
Foreign Affairs Minister Sokhonn had asked for Hun Sen’s advice while the minister was on his way back from a visit to Myanmar as Asean’s envoy, Hun Sen added.
“This morning I saw a message from him requesting advice whether to vote to support, abstain or vote against,” he said. “I sent a voice audio that we will vote like we did at the U.N.”