|Samdech Krom Preah Norodom Ranariddh
President of the Supreme Privy Council to HM the King of Kingdom of Cambodia with the rank of Prime Minister.
|Reign||12 December 2008 – present|
|Spouse||Neak Moneang Ouk Phalla|
Norodom Rattana Devi
|Mother||Neak Moneang Phat Kanthol|
2 January 1944 |
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
|Prime Minister of Cambodia|
2 July 1993 – 30 November 1998
|Preceded by||Hun Sen (Sen-Ranariddh Coalition)|
|Succeeded by||Ung Huot|
|Political party||Norodom Ranariddh Party (2006-present)
Prince Norodom Ranariddh (born 2 January 1944) is the second son of former king Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia and a half-brother of the current king, Norodom Sihamoni. He was Prime Minister of Cambodia from 1993 until 1997.
Prince Norodom Ranariddh grew up in Phnom Penh and he lived in France for many years. He was appointed a lecturer in law at the University of Provence, now Aix-Marseille Université, and remains one of the world experts in aspects of maritime law. Until recently he still gave lectures at the university, even when he was Prime Minister.
For most of the period of the Vietnamese Occupation of Cambodia 1979–1989, Prince Ranariddh led the Royalist movement, FUNCINPEC. When the monarchy was restored in 1993, his political party won the elections, the first free elections since 1972. As such he is regarded by many Cambodians as the man who brought democracy back to the country. He became Prime Minister, but had to serve jointly with his father's rival Hun Sen who had lost the 1993 elections but wanted to hang onto power and insisted that he remained in the government. By agreement, the two first shared the title of Prime Minister with Ranariddh as First Prime Minister, while Hun Sen became Second Prime Minister. Prince Ranarddh tried to reform the country but was obstructed by Hun Sen. These differences came to a head in July 1997 when Rannaridh was ousted by Hun Sen in a bloody coup d'état which saw some of Prince Ranariddh's supporters being killed, and his house looted.
After initially fleeing the country, Prince Ranariddh returned to Cambodia to participate in the national elections held in 1998. Because campaigning freely was not allowed, his party suffered heavy losses yet managed to form a new coalition with Hun Sen and Prince Ranariddh became Chairman of the Cambodian National Assembly.
When King Norodom Sihanouk abdicated in October 2004, Ranariddh was a likely choice for king owing to his popularity. However, he renounced his interest in the post, and later that month he was part of the nine-member throne council which convened and chose Norodom Sihamoni to be the next king.
He was chairman of the Funcinpec political party but was removed by a party vote on 18 October 2006, which was led by once his closest advisor and general Gen. Nhek Bun Chhay.
Subsequently he established the Norodom Ranariddh Party (NRP), which outpolled Funcinpec and is currently the third largest party in Cambodia. In the 2008 national election his new party won two seats in the national assembly.
Return from exile
|Monarchical styles of
|Reference style||His Royal Highness|
|Spoken style||Your Royal Highness|
After Prime Minister Hun Sen was re-elected in the 2008 Cambodian elections, King Norodom Sihamoni granted a royal pardon upon the request of the re-elected Prime Minister. Ranariddh had been sentenced in absentia to 18 months imprisonment in March 2007 in a political show trial over a US$3.6 million property sale. The court ruled he improperly sold his former political party headquarters and used proceeds from the sale to purchase another property in his own name. The building had actually been part of the house of his father-in-law, Eng Meas (who had been murdered by the Communists), and had been given to him and his wife in 1991 because his own house was occupied by a Russian diplomat who did not want to vacate it.
When he returned, half of the house became the party headquarters, and he lived in the other half. All serious commentators on Cambodia viewed the court ruling as a political move to try to remove the influence of Prince Ranariddh and force him from the country, and this is what happened. Shortly after he was pardoned, he read out a letter on television thanking King Sihamoni, his half brother, for giving him "full freedom in order to join in the development of the nation." The prince also thanked Prime Minister Hun Sen for helping to arrange the royal pardon for him and said that he would return to Cambodia soon: he subsequently returned, and has retired from politics taking part in promoting charity work in the country partly through the Norodom Ranariddh Foundation.
On 12 December 2008, King Norodom Sihamoni selected him as chief advisor of his advisory court, the Privy Council President of the Supreme Privy Council to HM the King of Kingdom of Cambodia with the rank of Prime Minister.
Ranariddh has had two wives:
- Princess Eng Marie to whom he married in 1968, with whom he had 2 sons and one daughter. The couple formally divorced in 2009.
- Ouk Phalla, a former classical dancer with the Royal Ballet (and a member of the Royal family through the Sisowath line) with whom he has two sons.
- Norodom Ranariddh - Biography
-  His official title is Samdech Krom Preah Norodom Ranariddh
- Widyono (2008), p. 278
- Court starts adultery case against Cambodian Prince Ranariddh, March 18, 2007, People's Daily Online
- Sex and punishment: Cambodia’s adultery law, 28 October 2010, The Phnom Penh post
|Royal Family of Cambodia|
- Widyono, Benny, Dancing in Shadows: Sihanouk, the Khmer Rouge, and the United Nations in Cambodia, Rowman & Littlefield, 2008, ISBN 0742555534
|Prime Minister of Cambodia
|President of the National Assembly