Samdech Heng Samrin
|4th President of the National Assembly of Cambodia|
21 March 2006
|Prime Minister||Hun Sen|
|Preceded by||Norodom Ranariddh|
|First Vice President of the National Assembly of Cambodia|
26 January 1998 – 21 March 2006
|Succeeded by||Nguon Nhel|
|Member of the National Assembly of Cambodia|
1 May 1981
|Constituency||Kampong Cham (1998–)
Phnom Penh (1981–93)
|General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Kampuchean People's Revolutionary Party|
5 December 1981 – 17 October 1991
|Preceded by||Pen Sovan|
|Succeeded by||Chea Sim, as President of the Cambodian People's Party|
|President of the People's Republic of Kampuchea|
7 January 1979 – 6 April 1992
|Prime Minister||Pen Sovan
|Preceded by||Position established|
|Succeeded by||Chea Sim, as Chairman of the Council of State|
25 May 1934 |
Ponhea Kreak, Kampong Cham, Cambodia
(now in Tbong Khmum)
|Political party||Cambodian People's Party|
Heng Samrin (Khmer: ហេង សំរិន; born 25 May 1934) is the President of the National Assembly of Cambodia, Honorary President of the Cambodian People's Party, and a Member of Parliament for Kampong Cham Province. He previously served as the de facto leader of the Hanoi-backed People's Republic of Kampuchea from 1979 to 1981 and General Secretary of the Kampuchean People's Revolutionary Party from 1981 to 1991. Heng Samrin is Cambodia's oldest parliamentarian, at 80 years of age. His honorary title is "Samdech Akeak Moha Ponhea Chakrei Heng Samrin" (Khmer: សម្តេចអគ្គមហាពញាចក្រីហេង សំរិន).
Life and career
Heng Samrin was born in Kampong Cham Province, Cambodia, in 1934. He became a member of the Khmer Rouge communist movement led by Pol Pot, and he became a political commissar and army division commander when the Khmer Rouge took over the government in 1975. In 1978, he defected from the Khmer Rouge, which was backed by China, and fled to Vietnam. There he became one of the founding members of the Kampuchean United Front for National Salvation (FUNSK). Later that year, Heng returned to Cambodia, leading a rebellion which was backed by Vietnam and the Soviet Union.
After a Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia overthrew the Khmer Rouge in 1979, Vietnamese occupation authorities established the People's Republic of Kampuchea, installing Heng and other pro-Vietnamese Communist politicians as leaders of the new government. He became chairman of the People's Revolutionary Council of the PRK in 1979. In 1981 he became chairman of the Council of State and secretary-general of the People's Revolutionary Party. Though at first he was the effective leader of the government, he quickly lost much of his power when the more moderate Hun Sen became Prime Minister in 1985. As Vietnamese influence declined, Heng began losing his posts, including the post of secretary-general in 1991 and chairman of the council of state in 1992. When King Norodom Sihanouk was restored in 1993, Heng was given the honorary title of Sâmdech, senior advisor of the King, and was made honorary chairman of Hun Sen's Cambodian People's Party. He was vice chairman of the National Assembly of Cambodia (1998–2006). Since 2006, he acts as Chairman of the Solidarity Front for Development of the Cambodian Motherland.
Today, Heng Samrin is a much loved and respected figure among the members of the Cambodian People's Party, even though his duties are often largely ceremonial. The Cambodian People's Party recently released a book about him called A Man of the People, dedicated to him as a hero.
His full title is Samdach Akeak Moha Ponhea Chakrei Heng Samrin, Protean Radhsaphea ney Preah Reacheanachak Kampuchea.
- Heller, H (2007). "Cambodia: Modern History". In Marshall Cavendish. World and Its peoples: Eastern and Southern Asia 6.
- Hunt, Luke. "Heng Samrin, Man of the People". The Diplomate. Retrieved 1 June 2012.
- Heng Samrin, A Man of the People.
- Hunt, Luke. "Heng Samrin, Man of the People". Retrieved 1 June 2012.
President of the State Presidium
|Chairman of the Revolutionary Council of Kampuchea
1979 – 1981
Chairman of the State Council
Chairman of the Revolutionary Council
|Chairman of the State Council of Cambodia
1981 – 1992
|President of the National Assembly of Cambodia
2006 – present
|Party political offices|
|General Secretary of the Kampuchean People's Revolutionary Party
1981 – 1991
President of the People's Party
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