Norodom Sihanouk

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Norodom Sihanouk
Norodom Sihanouk (1983).jpg
King of Cambodia
Reign 24 April 1941 – 3 March 1955
Coronation 3 May 1941
Predecessor Sisowath Monivong
Successor Norodom Suramarit
Prime Ministers
Reign 24 September 1993 – 7 October 2004
Coronation 24 September 1993
Predecessor Chea Sim (Regent)
Successor Norodom Sihamoni
Prime Ministers

Norodom Monineath

Full name
Preah Karuna Preah Bat Sâmdach Preah Norodom Sihanouk Preahmâhaviraksat
House House of Norodom
Father Norodom Suramarit
Mother Sisowath Kossamak
Born (1922-10-31)31 October 1922
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Died 15 October 2012(2012-10-15) (aged 89)
Beijing, China
Religion Theravada Buddhism
Norodom Sihanouk
Sihanouk 1959.jpg
1st Prime Minister of Cambodia
In office
17 November 1961 – 13 February 1962
Preceded by Penn Nouth
Succeeded by Nhiek Tioulong (acting)
In office
10 July 1958 – 19 April 1960
Preceded by Sim Var
Succeeded by Pho Proeung
In office
9 April 1957 – 7 July 1957
Monarch Norodom Suramarit
Preceded by Sam Yun
Succeeded by Sim Var
In office
15 September 1956 – 15 October 1956
Monarch Norodom Suramarit
Preceded by Khim Tit
Succeeded by Sam Yun
In office
1 March 1956 – 24 March 1956
Monarch Norodom Suramarit
Preceded by Oum Chheang Sun
Succeeded by Khim Tit
In office
3 October 1955 – 5 January 1956
Monarch Norodom Suramarit
Preceded by Leng Ngeth
Succeeded by Oum Chheang Sun
In office
7 April 1954 – 18 April 1954
Preceded by Chan Nak
Succeeded by Penn Nouth
In office
16 June 1952 – 24 January 1953
Preceded by Huy Kanthoul
Succeeded by Penn Nouth
In office
28 April 1950 – 30 May 1950
Preceded by Yem Sambaur
Succeeded by Sisowath Monipong
In office
18 March 1945 – 13 August 1945
Preceded by Position established
Succeeded by Son Ngoc Thanh
Leader of the Sangkum Reastr Niyum
In office
24 March 1955 – 18 March 1970
Preceded by Position established
Succeeded by None (party dissolved)
Head of State of Cambodia
In office
14 June 1993 – 24 September 1993
Preceded by Chea Sim
as Chairman of the Council of State
Succeeded by Himself as King
In office
20 June 1960 – 18 March 1970
Preceded by Chuop Hell (acting)
Succeeded by Cheng Heng
as President of the Khmer Republic
President of the State Presidium of Democratic Kampuchea
In office
17 April 1975 – 2 April 1976
Preceded by Sak Sutsakhan
as Chairman of the Supreme Committee
Succeeded by Khieu Samphan
Personal details
Political party FUNCINPEC (1981–1991)
Other political
Sangkum (1955–1970)
Independent (1945–1955)
Alma mater Armoured Cavalry Branch Training School
Profession Politician, actor, author, film director

Norodom Sihanouk (Khmer: នរោត្តម សីហនុ; 31 October 1922 – 15 October 2012) was the King of Cambodia, who reigned from 1941 to 1955 and again from 1993 to 2004. He was also the Head of State of Cambodia between 1960 and 1970 and again in 1993. Sihanouk also served as several terms as the Prime Minister of Cambodia between 1945 and 1962, some of which he served concurrently as the King or Head of State.

Sihanouk held so many positions since 1941 that the Guinness Book of World Records identifies him as the politician who has served the world's greatest variety of political offices.[1] These included two terms as king, two as sovereign prince, one as president, two as prime minister, as well as numerous positions as leader of various governments-in-exile. He served as puppet head of state for the Khmer Rouge government in 1975–1976.[2] Most of these positions were only honorific, including the last position as constitutional king of Cambodia. Sihanouk's actual period of effective rule over Cambodia was from 9 November 1953, when Cambodia gained its independence from France, until 18 March 1970, when General Lon Nol and the National Assembly deposed him. After his second abdication in 2004, he was known as "The King-Father of Cambodia" (Khmer: Preahmâhaviraksat), a position in which he retained many of his former responsibilities as constitutional monarch.

Early life and first reign[edit]

Sihanouk was the only child born of the union between Norodom Suramarit and Sisowath Kossamak.[3] He received his primary education at the Francois Baudoin school and Nuon Moniram school, and subsequently pursued his secondary education in Saigon at Lycée Chasseloup Laubat.[4] When his maternal grandfather, Sisowath Monivong died on 23 April 1941, the Crown Council appointed Prince Sihanouk as King of Cambodia the following day.[5] Sihanouk was officially crowned on 3 May 1941.[6] During the Japanese occupation of Cambodia, Sihanouk dedicated most of his time to sports, filming and the occasional tour to the countryside.[7] In March 1945, the Japanese military which had occupied Cambodia from August 1941 dissolved the nominal French colonial administration. Under pressure from the Japanese, Sihanouk proclaimed Cambodia's independence[8] and also assumed the position of Prime Minister at the same time.[9]

As the Prime Minister, Sihanouk revoked a decree issued by the last resident superior of Cambodia, Georges Gautier to romanise the Khmer alphabet.[10] Following the surrender of Japan in August 1945, nationalist forces loyal to Son Ngoc Thanh launched a coup which led to Thanh being appointed as the Prime Minister.[11] When the French returned to Cambodia in October 1945, Thanh was deposed from his position and was replaced by Sihanouk's uncle Sisowath Monireth.[12] Monireth negotiated for greater autonomy of internal affairs within Cambodia. A Modus Vivendi was signed in January 1946 whereby Cambodia was granted full autonomy within the French Union.[13] A joint French-Cambodian commission was set up after that to write Cambodia's constitution,[14] and in April 1946, Sihanouk introduced clauses which provided for an elected parliament on the basis of universal male suffrage. Provisions were also given to press freedom in-principle.[15] The first constitution was signed into effect by Sihanouk in May 1947.[16] Around this time, Sihanouk made two trips to Saumur, France where he undertook military training at the Armoured Cavalry Branch Training School in 1946 and again in 1948. At the end of the training, Sihanouk was made a reserve captain for the French army.[17]

In early 1949, Sihanouk travelled to Paris with his parents to negotiate for more autonomy to Cambodia, which led to the signing of a Franco-Khmer treaty that cancelled the Modus Vivendi signed in 1946.[18] In September 1949, Sihanouk dissolved the National Assembly and ruled by decree[19] until September 1951 when the Democrat Party pressured Sihanouk to hold national elections.[20] Sihanouk travelled to France in February 1953, and wrote twice to then-French President Vincent Auriol to cede control over all remaining executive powers in Cambodia by citing on widespread anti-French sentiment among the Cambodian populace.[21] Auriol responded by appointing the French commissioner for overseas territories, Jean Letourneau to meet with Sihanouk. When Letourneau rejected Sihanouk's suggestion, the latter travelled to Canada and United States where he exploited on the prevailing anti-communist sentiments to call for Cambodian independence. According to Sihanouk, Cambodia faced a Communist threat similar to that of the Viet Minh in Vietnam and the solution to address the Communist threat was full independence for Cambodia.[22]

Sihanouk returned to Cambodia in June 1953, and took up residence in Siem Reap.[23] He organised public rallies calling for the Cambodians to fight forces that opposed the Cambodian state, and organised a citizenry militia which recruited at least 100,000 people. In August 1953, France agreed to cede control over judicial and interior ministry to Cambodia, while another further agreement was secured in October 1953 which saw France surrendering control over defense matters. Sihanouk returned to Phnom Penh at the end of the month,[24] and on 9 November 1953 Cambodia officially declared independence from France.[23]

In May 1954, Sihanouk sent Nhiek Tioulong and Tep Phan to participate in the Geneva Conference.[25] The accord for Cambodia reaffirmed the country's independence, and also allowed Cambodia to seek military aid from any country. Sihanouk still faced domestic opposition from the Democrat Party[26] which were unhappy with his intervention in politics and held a majority in the National Assembly.[20] In February 1955, a referendum was held, and campaign propaganda made references to Sihanouk's efforts to seek national independence. The referendum returned with 99.8% of the electorate approving Sihanouk's efforts.[27]

Sangkum era[edit]

Premiership (1955–1960)[edit]

Sihanouk announced his abdication from the throne on 2 March 1955 over Phnom Penh radio, and stated his intention not to return to the throne after abdication.[28] The throne council nominated his father Suramarit to succeed him.[29] A month later in April 1955, Sihanouk announced the formation of the Sangkum, a political organisation with a stated emphasis on forging national unity. Four right-wing political parties led by Lon Nol, Sam Sary, Oum Cheang Sun and Dap Chhuon merged to join the Sangkum at Sihanouk's advice.[30] When parliamentary elections were held on September 1955, the Sangkum took 83% of all valid votes, taking up all seats in the National Assembly. Sihanouk was subsequently sworn in as Prime Minister the following month.[31]

Meeting in Beijing in 1956: from left Mao Zedong, Peng Zhen, Sihanouk, Liu Shaoqi.

In the first few years after Sihanouk became Prime Minister, he introduced several constitutional changes that included extending suffrage to women, adopting the Khmer language as the sole official language of the country[32] and making Cambodia a Constitutional monarchy by vesting policy making powers to the Prime Minister rather than the King.[33] However, policy disputes and politicking between ministries and politicians occurred regularly, leading to regular cabinet reshuffles[34] and Sihanouk himself alternately resigned and retook the Prime Minister post three times between 1955 and 1958.[35]

Around 1958, Cambodia's relations with Thailand and South Vietnam deteriorated as the armies of both countries carried out incursions into the disputed territory of Preah Vihear and border areas with Vietnam at Stung Treng respectively.[36] The leaders of these both countries, Sarit Thanarat and Ngo Dinh Diem also harboured deep suspicions of Sihanouk's professed policy neutrality as Sihanouk was warmly received by Zhou Enlai during a state visit to China in that year.[37] At this point of time, Diem and his younger brother and chief adviser, Ngo Dinh Nhu came up with a secret plot to overthrow Sihanouk and install a pro-American regime.[38] When the CIA and Sarit learnt of Diem and Nhu's coup plans, they quickly joined in to support. Thailand facilitated the secret meetings, and Dap Chhuon, Son Ngoc Thanh and Sam Sary were roped in to discuss plans to overthrow Sihanouk.[39] Sihanouk discovered the plot, and he publicised the plot details during a rally at Kampong Cham in January 1959.[40]

The CIA and Dap Chhuon pressed on with their plans to overthrow Sihanouk, and Thailand provided large caches of weapons and ammunitions. An Japanese American CIA operative, Victor Matsui also brought gold to help finance the coup attempt in February 1959. Sihanouk sent Lon Nol to capture Dap Chhuon, who had him summarily executed.[41] The weapons and gold were discovered after that, and Sihanouk charged Dap Chhuon, his brother Slat Peou and the South Vietnamese ambassador to Cambodia Ngo Trong Hieu for their direct involvement in the plot.[42] Six months later on 31 August 1959, a small packaged lacquer gift fitted with a parcel bomb was delivered to Queen Kossamak. Norodom Vakrivan, the chief of protocol who opened the package was killed instantly, along with a personal valet of King Suramarit. Another two palace servants were wounded, but King Suramarit and Queen Kossamak who were in another room escaped unharmed. An investigation was carried out and traced the origin of the parcel bomb being sent from an American military base in Saigon,[43] and Sihanouk went on to accuse Ngo Dinh Nhu of masterminding the bomb attack as an assasination attempt against him.[44]

Head of State (1960–1970)[edit]

King Suramarit died on 3 April 1960 after suffering from several months of poor health[45] which Sihanouk attributed to the fright that Suramarit received from parcel bomb attack.[43] Sisowath Monireth was sworn in as the Regent of Cambodia the following day,[46] and Sihanouk introduced constitutional amendments by creating a new post of the Head of State of Cambodia that provided ceremonial powers equivalent to that of the King. A referendum was held on 5 June 1960 which approved of Sihanouk's proposals, and Sihanouk was formally appointed as the Head of State on 14 June 1960.[47]

Sihanouk's relationship with leaders of various countries deterioated from 1962, which he claimed that he was not accorded appropriate decorum when meeting with world leaders. The claims were made during Sihanouk's visit to the United Nations in 1962 and a proposed visit to the United Kingdom that did not materialise around the same time.[48] Sihanouk have had held deep suspicion of the CIA continuously supporting Khmer Serei efforts to overthrow his regime,[49] and in November 1962, threatened to reject all American economic aid if CIA did not withdraw its support for the Khmer Serei.[50] One year later in November 1963, Sihanouk announced that Cambodia would reject all forms of economic aid from the United States,[51] at the same time nationalising Cambodia's entrepot trade.[52] Sihanouk established a statutory board, SONEXIM which was empowered to formulate policies to regulate the entrepot trade[53]

From 1964 onwards, Sihanouk forged closer relations with North Vietnam and the Viet Cong resistance.[54] He allowed the Viet Cong to build a trail through eastern Cambodia to allow Viet Cong troops to receive war supplies from North Vietnam. The trail became known as the Sihanouk Trail.[55] When the US learnt of Vietcong presence in eastern Cambodia, they started a bombing campaign in this region,[56] which spurrned Sihanouk to sever diplomatic ties with the US in May 1965.[55] Other Communist countries including China, Soviet Union and Czechoslovakia provided military aid to Cambodia as a result of Sihanouk's warming of relations with North Vietnam.[54]

According to Sisowath Entaravong, a member of the royal family, Cambodia's economy was heavily affected with corruption which involved high-ranking civil servants, government ministers and members of the royal family.[57] In 1963, when Sihanouk nationalised the entrepot trade, commodity prices were fixed at low rates to ward off competition from imported luxury goods. However, merchants were able to import luxury goods through bribery, a practice that caused the worsening of corruption. Army officers also helped to sell imported rice to Viet Cong forces at lowered prices to bypass the expensive customs duties, and in return they received kickbacks.[58] Army officers also suffered pay cuts in their salaries due to Sihanouk's decision to reject US aid, which was partly paid from US aid. This spurned them to participate in clandestine trade activities. The Cambodian army also experienced a reduction of weapon inventory due to attrition and lack of spare parts, and shortage of army uniforms once US aid was terminated.[59]

Sometime in mid-1966, bilateral relations between China and Cambodia deterioated as Mao Zedong were uncomfortable with Cambodia's relations with the Soviet Union, whereas Sihanouk was uncomfortable with Mao's Cultural Revolution which started in the same year.[60] In April 1967, angry peasants killed two government soldiers when they went to collect rice in Battambang Province, which led to the Samlaut Uprising.[61] Sihanouk accused Khieu Samphan, Hou Yuon and Hu Nim of orchestrating the rebellion,[62] forcing them to flee and join the Khmer Rouge.[63] A month later, Sihanouk also received reports that many members of the ethnic Chinese Cambodian community were becoming critical of the Lon Nol administration and were receptive to Chinese Communist propaganda.[64] Sihanouk believed that cladestine intelligence services from the Chinese government had played a role in these two events,[62] and acted to downgrade bilateral relations with China in September 1967.[65]

Sihanouk subsequently pursued rapprochement with the United States, and hosted a private visit of Jacqueline Kennedy to Cambodia in October 1967.[66] He met with the US ambassador to India, Chester Bowles in January 1968 and acknowledged the presence of Viet Cong troops in the Cambodia while also indicating that he would not stop US forces from crossing into Cambodia to attack Viet Cong forces. Diplomatic relations between Cambodia and United States were restored at the end of 1968.[67] When Henry Kissinger laid out plans to bomb parts of eastern Cambodia in 1969, Sihanouk refrained from protesting against them.[66] Around this time, Cambodia suffered a decline in agricultural productivity due to the drift of Agent Orange from South Vietnam and widespread corruption.[68] In August 1969, Sihanouk approved of a new government led by Lon Nol and with Sisowath Sirik Matak as his deputy. When Lon Nol left Cambodia in October to seek medical treatment, Sirik Matak instituted policy changes that ran contrary to Sihanouk's wishes, such as re-establishing Cambodian troop presence in the northeastern provinces where the Viet Cong were based in, and also relaxed state control of the entrepot trade[69] From September 1969 onwards, Lon Nol and Sirik Matak also secretly contacted Son Ngoc Thanh to discuss the possibility of overthrowing Sihanouk.[70]

Deposition and Khmer Rouge years[edit]

Sihanouk visiting Romania in 1972, with Romanian President Nicolae Ceaușescu (right)..

In early January 1970, Sihanouk left Cambodia for medical treatment in France.[71] The following month, Lon Nol de-monetised all 500-riel banknotes in circulation to deprive Viet Cong troops of the ability to buy rice and supply goods. Lon Nol and Sirik Matak also encouraged demonstrations to be held outside the North Vietnamese embassy to protest the presence of Viet Cong troops in Cambodia.[72] On 16 March 1970, the half-brother of Monique, Oum Mannorine was summoned to the National Assembly over corruption charges.[73] On the same night after the hearing, Oum ordered troops under his command to arrest Lon Nol and Sirik Matak, but ended up being placed under house arrest by Sirik Matak. Two days later on 18 March, troops were stationed at Pochentong airport and the National Assembly building. The assembly voted to endorse a military government headed by Lon Nol and provide emergency powers.[74] A secret ballot was cast whereby the assembly voted to depose Sihanouk.[75]

Sihanouk was in Moscow on the day of his overthrow and the Soviet foreign minister, Alexei Kosygin, was tasked to informed him of the news.[76] Sihanouk flew to Beijing where he was received by the Chinese premier Zhou Enlai. Sihanouk also met with the Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Van Dong, and on 23 March 1970 Sihanouk announced a resistance front known as National United Front of Kampuchea (FUNK).[77] Sometime later on 5 May 1970, Sihanouk announced the formation of a government-in-exile known as GRUNK and led Communist countries including China, North Vietnam, and North Korea to break relations with the Lon Nol regime.[78] In Phnom Penh, a military trial convened on 2 July 1970 and Sihanouk was sentenced to death in absentia three days later.[79]

Sihanouk lived alternately lived in Beijing and Pyongyang between 1970 and 1975, where custom-made, large residences were built for him to live.[80] In February 1973, Sihanouk travelled to Hanoi where he started on a long journey with Khieu Samphan and other Khmer Rouge leaders. The convoy traveled along the Ho Chi Minh trail and reached the Cambodian border at Stung Treng Province the following month. Sihanouk faced constant bombardment of American planes from Operation Freedom Deal throughout his visit to Khmer Rouge–controlled areas of Cambodia. Sihanouk travelled across the provinces of Stung Treng, Preah Vihear, and Siem Reap.[81] At Siem Reap, Sihanouk visited the temples of Angkor Wat, Banteay Srei, and Bayon.[82] In August 1973, Sirik Matak wrote an open letter to call Sihanouk to bring the Cambodian Civil War to an end and accepting the possibility of the latter returning to the country. When the letter reached Sihanouk, he angrily rejected Sirik Matak's advances.[83]

When the Khmer Republic fell to the Khmer Rouge in April 1975, Prince Sihanouk became the symbolic head of state of the new regime. He continued to live in Beijing until September 1975[84] when he returned to Cambodia so as to inter the ashes of Queen Kossamak, who had died in Beijing just days after the Fall of Phnom Penh.[85] He subsequently went abroad to recommend the diplomatic recognition of Democratic Kampuchea, and visited several Communist countries[86] before returning to Cambodia on 31 December 1975. After presiding a meeting to endorse the constitution of the Democratic Kampuchea,[87] Sihanouk was taken on a tour across Cambodia by Khieu Samphan the following month whereby he witnessed the effects of the Cambodian genocide orchestrated by the Angkar. Sihanouk asked to resign from his position as the head of state, which Pol Pot rejected.[88] However, his request to resign was subsequently accepted in mid-April 1975 and retroactively dated back to 2 April 1975.[89]

From this point in time onwards, Sihanouk was placed under house arrest[90] until January 1979, and his requests to travel overseas were turned down by the Angkar.[91] Sihanouk was taken to Beijing from Phnom Penh on 6 January 1979, one day before Vietnamese troops occupied Phnom Penh.[92] From Beijing, Sihanouk flew to New York to attend the UN Security Council where he simultaneously condemned the Khmer Rouge for orchestrating the Cambodian genocide as well as the Vietnamese occupation of Cambodia.[93] Sihanouk subsequently sought asylum in China after making two unsuccessful asylum applications with the United States and France.[94]

FUNCINPEC and CGDK years[edit]

Sihanouk with U.S. President Ronald Reagan in the Oval Office of the White House, 1988.

A new government supported by Vietnam, the People's Republic of Kampuchea (PRK) was established shortly after the overthrow of Democratic Kampuchea. The Chinese government led by Deng Xiaoping was unhappy[95] with Vietnam's role in the establishment of the PRK government. Deng proposed to Sihanouk to corporate with the Khmer Rouge, an idea which Sihanouk rejected.[96] In March 1981, Sihanouk established a resistance movement, FUNCINPEC together with a small resistance army known as the ANS (Armée Nationale Sihanoukiste).[97] Around this time, Sihanouk started tripartite talks between FUNCINPEC with the Khmer Rouge and the Son Sann-led Khmer People's National Liberation Front (KPNLF)[98] as China applied diplomatic pressure for him to collaborate with the Khmer Rouge as a precondition to receiving material aid for FUNCINPEC.[99]

After several rounds of tripartite talks, Sihanouk presided over the establishment of a government exile, the Coalition Government of Democratic Kampuchea (CGDK) in June 1982.[99] Several rounds of tripartite talks were hosted by China between 1982 and 1987, but yielded little diplomatic progress to ending the Vietnamese occupation of Cambodia.[100] From 1986 onwards, Vietnam faced political pressure from the Soviet Union to withdraw its troops from Cambodia. In December 1987, the Prime Minister of the PRK government, Hun Sen first met with Sihanouk to discuss about the ending of the protracted Cambodian–Vietnamese War.[101] The following July, the then-foreign minister of Indonesia, Ali Alatas brokered the first series of discussion known as the Jakarta Informal Meetings (JIM).

The JIMs were held in Jakarta, and involved the four warring Cambodian factions consisting of FUNCINPEC, Khmer Rouge, KPNLF and the PRK government over the future of Cambodia in Jakarta. After additional JIMs were held in February and May 1989, Ali Alatas and the then-French foreign minister Roland Dumas convened the Paris Peace Conference between July and August 1989 to discuss plans for Vietnamese troop withdrawal and power sharing arrangements for a future Cambodian government.[102] In August 1989, Sihanouk resigned as president of FUNCINPEC.[103] In September 1990, the United Nations (UN) sponsored the establishment of the Supreme National Council of Cambodia (SNC), an administrative body responsible for overseeing sovereign affairs of Cambodia for an interim period until UN-sponsored elections are held.[104] The creation of the SNC was subsequently ratified with United Nations Security Council Resolution 668.[105] In July 1991, Sihanouk left FUNCINPEC altogether, and was elected as the chairperson of the SNC.[106]

UNTAC administration era[edit]

The Paris Peace Accords were signed on 23 October 1991 which formally recognised the SNC and provided for the creation of the United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC).[107] The UNTAC was authorised to station peacekeeping troops in Cambodia to supervise the disarmament of the four warring Cambodian factions and carry out free and fair national elections in the country.[108] Sihanouk subsequently returned to Phnom Penh on 14 November 1991, and city folks lined the streets of Phnom Penh as Sihanouk rode on an open top limousine with Hun Sen to celebrate his return to the country.[109] The UNTAC administration was formally established in February 1992, but soon faced resistance from the Khmer Rouge in enforcing peacekeeping operations.[110] Sihanouk responded by calling to abandon the Khmer Rouge from the peacekeeping process in July and September 1992. During this period of time, Sihanouk spent most of the time in Siem Reap and making helicopter trips to supervise election preparations in KPNLF, FUNCINPEC and Khmer Rouge resistance bases.[111]

Sihanouk left Cambodia for Beijing in November 1992,[112] where he would stay on for the next six months until he returned to Cambodia on the eve of elections in May 1993.[113] While in Beijing, Sihanouk briefly proposed a Presidential system government for Cambodia to Boutros Boutros-Ghali, but dropped the idea after facing rejection from the Khmer Rouge.[114] The general elections were held in May 1993, with FUNCINPEC headed by Sihanouk's son Norodom Ranariddh garnering the most votes while the Cambodian People's Party (CPP) headed by Hun Sen came in second.[115] CPP leaders were unhappy with the election results and on 3 June 1993, Hun Sen and Chea Sim called on Sihanouk to assume all state power. Sihanouk complied, and announced the formation of a Provisional National Government (PRG) headed by him with Hun Sen and Ranariddh as his deputies.[116] Ranariddh was not informed of Sihanouk's plans, and joined the Australia, China, United Kingdom and United States in opposing the PRG plan. Sihanouk dropped the PRG plan the following day through a national radio broadcast.[117]

On 14 June 1993, a constituent assembly session presided by Ranariddh nullified the 1970 coup d'etat which overthrew Sihanouk, and reinstated the latter as Cambodia's Head of State.[118] In the first few days of his appointment, Sihanouk renamed the Cambodian military to its pre-1970 namesake, the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces. On 29 June 1993, Sihanouk issued another order to officially rename the country from the State of Cambodia to simply "Cambodia". He also reinstated Nokor Reach as the National Anthem of Cambodia with some minor modifications to its lyrics, and also the Cambodian flag to its pre-1970 design.[119] Sihanouk also appointed Ranariddh and Hun Sen as the Co-Prime Ministers of Cambodia with equal powers in a provisional government,[120] which was ratified by the Constituent Assembly on 2 July 1993.[118] On 30 August 1993,[121] Ranariddh and Hun Sen met Sihanouk presented two draft constitutions, one of them stipulating a constitutional monarchy headed by a King and another a republican state led by a Head of State. Sihanouk chose the option of making Cambodia a constitutional monarchy,[122] and was ratified by the constituent assembly on 21 September 1993.[123]

Second reign[edit]

The new constitution was proclaimed on 24 September 1993, and Sihanouk was reinstated as the King of Cambodia.[124] A permanent coalition government was formed between FUNCINPEC, CPP and BLDP, and Ranariddh and Hun Sen assumed the positions of First and Second Prime Ministers respectively.[125] Shortly after that, Sihanouk took leave to Beijing for cancer treatment where he spent several months there.[126] In May and June 1994, Sihanouk wrote a series of public letters to the government, starting with a call for fresh elections and giving government posts to end the ongoing insurgency with the Khmer Rouge based in Pailin and Anlong Veng. When Hun Sen rejected the suggestions,[127] Sihanouk proposed a national unity government that would see the participation of FUNCINPEC, CPP and Khmer Rouge forces with him as the Head of State and government.[128] Hun Sen rejected Sihanouk's proposal for the second time, and cited the Khmer Rouge's past intransigent attitude would make the proposal unrealistic.[129] In July 1994, Sihanouk arranged the exile of another son, Norodom Chakrapong after he was physically threatened by government forces[130] over an alleged coup attempt against the government.[131] The following November, Sihanouk made a similar arrangement for his younger half-brother, Norodom Sirivudh to be exiled to France after the latter was implicated in an assasination plot to kill Hun Sen.[132]

Relations between the two co-Prime Ministers, Ranariddh and Hun Sen started to deteriorate from early 1996[133] as Ranariddh became unhappy with repeated delays from the CPP in awarding low-level government posts to FUNCINPEC officials.[134] At the FUNCINPEC congress in March 1996, Ranariddh threatened to pull out of the coalition government[135] and hold national elections in 1996,[136] which stoked unease from Hun Sen and other CPP officials.[137] The following month, Sihanouk presided over a meeting between some royal family members and senior FUNCINPEC officials in Paris. Sihanouk attempted to tone down the tensions between FUNCINPEC and the CPP by issuing statements, assuring that FUNCINPEC would not leave the coalition government and there were no reactionary elements to bring down Hun Sen or the CPP.[138]

In March 1997, Sihanouk offered to abdicate the throne, and his suggestion prompted Hun Sen to call for constitutional amendments to bar members of the royal family from participating in politics.[139] In July 1997, violent clashes erupted in Phnom Penh between forces loyal to the CPP and FUNCINPEC, which effectively led to Ranariddh's ouster.[140] Sihanouk voiced displeasure against Hun Sen for orchestrating the clashes, but refrained from calling Ranariddh's ouster a "coup d'etat", a term which FUNCINPEC members used.[141] When the National Assembly elected Ung Huot as the First Prime Minister to replace Ranariddh on 6 August 1997,[142] Sihanouk charged that Ranariddh's ouster was illegal and renewed his offer to abdicate from the throne.[143] In September 1998, Sihanouk meditated political talks in Siem Reap after the FUNCINPEC and the Sam Rainsy Party (SRP) staged demonstrations against the CPP-led government for irregularities over the 1998 general elections.[144]

Sihanouk maintained a monthly bulletin, which he wrote commentaries over governance issues and posted photo souvenirs of Cambodia in the 1950s and 1960s. Around 1997, a character known by the name of "Ruom Rith" started to appear in the monthly bulletin and became extremely critical of Hun Sen and the government. Hun Sen reportedly became extremely unhappy with the commentaries, and called on the king to stop publishing the commentaries on two occassions in 1998 and 2003.[145] According to Ranariddh, Ruom Rith was an alter ego of Sihanouk, a claim which the latter vehemently denies.[146] In July 2002, Sihanouk expressed concern over the absence of detailed constitutional provisions over the organisation and functioning of the the Cambodian throne council.[147] When Hun Sen rejected Sihanouk concern, the latter issued a letter in September 2002 threatening to abdicate so as to force the throne council to convene and elect a new monarch.[148]

General elections were held again in July 2003, whereby the CPP won the most votes but failed to secure two-thirds of all parliamentary sears required to form a new government. The two runner-up parties, FUNCINPEC and SRP[149] filed complaints over alleged electoral irregularities with the Constitutional Council, which were turned down in August 2003[150] When FUNCINPEC and SRP announced their decision to attend the swearing in ceremony of parliamentarians, Sihanouk announced his decision to abstain from presiding the swearing-in ceremony, unless all parliamentarians from the three political parties agreed to attend.[151] The Constitutional Council subsequently advised Sihanouk to preside over the swearing-in ceremony,[152] which was held later in October 2003.[153] The CPP, FUNCINPEC and SRP held additional talks into 2004 and Sihanouk proposed a tripartite unity government, but failed to reach an agreement until June 2004.[154]

Abdication and final years[edit]

Sihanouk made a sudden announcement to abdicate on 6 July 2004. At the same time, Hun Sen and Ranariddh had agreed to introduce a constitutional amendment that allowed a open voting system for the selection of the government ministers as well as the President of the National Assembly. Sihanouk opposed the open voting system, and called on Senate President Chea Sim not to authorise the bill. When Chea Sim heeded his advice, he was ferried out of the country shortly before the National Assembly convened to vote on 15 July. A new coalition government was formed on the same day between the CPP and FUNCINPEC, with the SRP in the opposition.[155]

In 2004, the now 82-year-old Sihanouk decided to move out of Cambodia, taking up residence in Pyongyang, North Korea,[156] and later in Beijing, People's Republic of China. Citing reasons of ill health, he announced his abdication from the throne on 7 October 2004. Sihanouk was diagnosed with B-cell lymphoma in his prostate in 1993; the disease recurred in his stomach in 2005, and a new cancer was found in December 2008. Sihanouk also suffered from diabetes and hypertension.[157]

The constitution of Cambodia has no provision for an abdication. Chea Sim, the President of the Senate, assumed the title of acting Head of State (a title he had held many times before), until the Throne Council met on 14 October and appointed Norodom Sihamoni, one of Sihanouk's sons, as the new king. The elderly Sihanouk was then proclaimed as His Majesty The King Father of Cambodia.

Despite his illness, Sihanouk made his last public appearance in Phnom Penh on 30 October 2011, to celebrate his 89th birthday and the 20th anniversary of his homecoming.[158]


Norodom Sihanouk's royal crematorium
Back to the homeland, Norodom Sihanouk's body arrives in Phnom Penh.
Funeral procession of King Norodom Sihanouk.

Sihanouk had been receiving medical treatment in Beijing since January, 2012 for a number of health problems, including colon cancer, diabetes, and hypertension.[159] He died of a heart attack in Beijing, on 15 October 2012, 16 days before what would have been his 90th birthday.[158] State flags flew at half-mast, and King Norodom Sihamoni and Prime Minister Hun Sen went to Beijing to bring home Sihanouk's body for a funeral at the Royal Palace.[160]

Prince Sisowath Thomico, Sihanouk's assistant and nephew, said "his death was a great loss to Cambodia," adding that Sihanouk had dedicated his life "for the sake of his entire nation, country and for the Cambodian people."[159] United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also commented, acknowledging Sihanouk's "long dedication to his country and his legacy as a unifying national leader who is revered by Cambodians and respected internationally."[159] After Sihanouk's death, the National Television of Kampuchea repeatedly screened a 30-minute documentary about his life.[160] 100,000 Cambodians were expected to line the route from the airport to the Royal Palace for the return of Sihanouk's body, but state television broadcaster TVK later said about 1,200,000 people had turned out.[159][161] On November 28, 2012, King Father Norodom Sihanouk was anointed by Royal Decree of HM King Norodom Sihamoni with the title Preah Karuna Preah Norodom Sihanouk Preah Borom Ratanakkot (Khmer: ព្រះករុណាព្រះនរោត្តម សីហនុ ព្រះបរមរតនកោដ្ឋ) (literally meaning The King who lies in the Diamond Urn).

On 1 February 2013, crowds gathered on the streets of Phnom Penh to bid one last farewell to Sihanouk, as his body was carried through the city. Other foreign dignities also attended his cremation ceremony, including French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault, Prince Akishino of Japan, China's Jia Qinglin, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung of Vietnam, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra of Thailand, as well as US ambassador to Cambodia William E. Todd, and many more.[162] The body was brought to the Royal Palace, where it was cremated on 5 February 2013. Sihanouk's ashes were then submersed into the Mekong River.[163]

After his death, Prime Minister Hun Sen announced that a statue of Sihanouk would be made. It was inaugurated on 11 October 2013 with King Norodom Sihamoni and Queen-Mother Norodom Monineath present at the ceremony.[164] The statue is located in Phnom Penh, near the Independence Monument. The government also announced that October 15 will become an official public holiday as a mourning period of Norodom Sihanouk.

Titles and styles[edit]

Statue of Norodom Sihanouk in Phnom Penh.
Monarchical styles of
King Norodom Sihanouk
Coat of arms of Cambodia.svg
Reference style His Royal Majesty
Spoken style Your Royal Majesty
Alternative style Sir

Following his abdication, Sihanouk's official title was "Preah Karuna Preah Bat Sâmdach Preah Norodom Sihanouk Preahmâhaviraksat" (Khmer: ព្រះករុណាព្រះបាទសម្តេចព្រះ នរោត្តម សីហនុ ព្រះមហាវីរក្សត្រ) or (ព្រះករុណា ព្រះបាទសម្ដេចព្រះ នរោត្តម សីហនុ ព្រះមហាវីរក្សត្រ ព្រះវររាជបិតាឯករាជ្យ បូរណភាពទឹកដី និងឯកភាពជាតិខ្មែរ) in English (His Majesty King Norodom Sihanouk The Great Heroic King King-Father of Khmer independence, territorial integrity and national unity).

Honours [165][edit]

Foreign honours[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Sihanouk was interested in music; he composed and frequently performed songs in the Khmer, French, and English languages. He played the clarinet, the saxophone, the piano and the accordion. From an early age, he had a passion for cinema as well as art, theatre, and dance. He became a prodigious filmmaker, writing, directing (and acting in) many films which were largely fictional, always with an underlying theme of documenting life and historical events in Cambodia.[citation needed]

His 1966 film La Forêt Enchantée ("The Enchanted Forest", "Prei Proseth" in Khmer) was entered into the 5th Moscow International Film Festival in 1967.[167][168]


Sihanouk reportedly had several wives and concubines, producing at least fourteen children in a period of eleven years.[citation needed] According to Time (30 June 1956), however, his legal wives were Princess Samdech Norleak (married 1955) and Paule Monique Izzi (married 1955), who is a step-granddaughter of HRH Prince Norodom Duongchak of Cambodia and the younger daughter of Pomme Peang and her second husband, Jean-François Izzi, a banker. A profile of Sihanouk in The New York Times (4 June 1993, page A8) stated that the King met Monique Izzi in 1951, when he awarded her a prize in a beauty pageant.



  • The position of Cambodia in a dangerous world San Francisco : Asia Foundation, 1958
  • Speech delivered by His Royal Highness Prince Norodom Sihanouk, President of the Council of Ministers on the occasion of the inauguration of the Khmer-American Friendship Highway Phnom-Penh, 1959
  • Ideal, purpose and duties of the Khmer Royal Socialist Youth; interpretation and commentary of the statute of the K. R. S. Y., N.p., c.1960s
  • Address of H.R.H. Norodom Sihanouk, Chief of State of Cambodia [at the] conference of heads of state or government of non-aligned countries. New York: Permanent Mission of Cambodia to the United Nations 1961
  • Address of H.R.H. Prince Norodom Sihanouk, Chief of State of Cambodia to the Asia Society. New York: Permanent Mission of Cambodia to the United Nations 1961
  • Address at the sixteenth session of the General Assembly of the United Nations New York: Permanent Mission of Cambodia to the United Nations 1961
  • Articles published in "Realités cambodgiennes" 22 June – 27 July 1962. Washington, D. C., Royal Cambodian Embassy 1961
  • Speech by Prince Norodom Sihanouk, Head of State, at the opening of the sixth Asian Conference organized by the Society of Friends. [Phnom-Penh] Information 1962
  • Open letter to the international press Phnom Penh: Imprimerie du Ministere de L'Information, 1964
  • Interview with Prince Sihanouk. with William Worthy Phnom Penh: The Ministry of Information, 1965
  • Are we "false neutrals"?: editorial in Kambuja review no. 16; 15 July 1966 Phnom Phen: Head of State's Cabinet, 1966
  • The failure experienced by the United States in their dealings with the "Third World," viewed in the light of Cambodia's own experience, Phnom Penh? 1968
  • Brief notes on national construction in Cambodia Phnom Penh : Impr. Sangkum Reastr Niyum, 1969
  • Message and solemn declaration of Samdech Norodom Sihanouk, Head of State of Cambodia (March 23, 1970). [S.l.]: Royal Government of National Union of Cambodia; New York: Indochina Solidarity Committee, 1970
  • Prince Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia talks to Americans, Sept.–Oct. 1970. [n. p., 1970
  • Message to American friends by Prince Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia. [n. p., 1970
  • Letter of Samdech Norodom Sihanouk, Head of State of Cambodia, to their majesties and their excellencies the heads of government of non-aligned countries. [n. p., 1970
  • Cambodia today: an interview with Prince Norodom Sihanouk. (with Ken Coates and Chris Farley) Nottingham, Eng.: Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation, 1970
  • Prince Norodom Sihanouk replies to Mr Norman Kirk M.P., Leader of the Opposition (New Zealand) [New Zealand? : s.n., 1971
  • Prince Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia speaks; January–February 1971. [S.l. : s.n., 1971
  • Third World liberation: the key: speech to the Algiers summit conference Nottingham, Eng.: Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation, 1973


From an early age, Sihanouk had a passion for cinema as well as art, theater, and dance. He became a prodigious filmmaker, writing, directing, and acting in more than twenty movies and short films. Largely fictional, they contained an underlying theme of documenting life and historical events in Cambodia. His 1966 film La Forêt Enchantée ("The Enchanted Forest", "Robam Tepmonorom" in Khmer) was entered into the 5th Moscow International Film Festival in 1967.[170]

Selected filmography[edit]


  • Cortège Royal (1969)
  • Cambodge 1965 (1965)
  • Norodom Sihanouk, Roi Cinéaste (1997) by Frédéric Mitterrand

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "King Father Sihanouk holds ECCC at bay". The Phnom Penh Post. 7 September 2007. Retrieved 13 October 2009. King Father Norodom Sihanouk has held so many positions since 1941 that the Guinness Book of World Records identifies him as the politician who has occupied the world's greatest variety of political offices. [dead link]
  2. ^ Widyono, Benny, Dancing in Shadows: Sihanouk, the Khmer Rouge, and the United Nations in Cambodia (2008), p. 289.
  3. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 30
  4. ^ Jeldres (2003), p. 58
  5. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 294
  6. ^ Jeldres (2003), p. 54
  7. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 30
  8. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 37
  9. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 42
  10. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 43
  11. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 45
  12. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 48
  13. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 44
  14. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 50
  15. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 51
  16. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 46
  17. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 206
  18. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 47
  19. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 63
  20. ^ a b Osborne (1994), p. 66
  21. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 74
  22. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 76
  23. ^ a b Jeldres (2003), p. 61
  24. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 80
  25. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 87
  26. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 88
  27. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 52
  28. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 54
  29. ^ Jeldres (2003), p. 44
  30. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 55
  31. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 56
  32. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 58
  33. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 59
  34. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 105
  35. ^ Burchett (1973), p. 84
  36. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 107
  37. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 108
  38. ^ Burchett (1973), p. 105
  39. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 110
  40. ^ Burchett (1973), p. 107
  41. ^ Burchett (1973), p. 108
  42. ^ Burchett (1973), p. 109
  43. ^ a b Burchett (1973), p. 110
  44. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 112
  45. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 115
  46. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 61
  47. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 62
  48. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 153
  49. ^ Peou (2000), p. 126
  50. ^ Peou (2000), p. 125
  51. ^ Burchett (1973), p. 133
  52. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 161
  53. ^ Burchett (1973), p. 137
  54. ^ a b Peou (2000), p. 124
  55. ^ a b Marlay and Neher (1999), p. 160
  56. ^ Burchett (1973), p. 139
  57. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 159
  58. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 166
  59. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 168
  60. ^ Cohen (1968), pp. 16-7
  61. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 190
  62. ^ a b Osborne (1994), p. 193
  63. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 194
  64. ^ Cohen (1968), pp. 24-5
  65. ^ Cohen (1968), p. 26
  66. ^ a b Marlay and Neher (1999), p. 162
  67. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 195
  68. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 204
  69. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 206
  70. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 210
  71. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 70
  72. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 211
  73. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 213
  74. ^ Burchett (1973), p. 50
  75. ^ Burchett (1973), p. 51
  76. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 79
  77. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 219
  78. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 137
  79. ^ Burchett (1973), p. 271
  80. ^ Marlay and Neher (1999), p. 167
  81. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 178
  82. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 183
  83. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 226
  84. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 229
  85. ^ Marlay and Neher (1999), p. 168
  86. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 191
  87. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 231
  88. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 232
  89. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 233
  90. ^ Marlay and Neher (1999), p. 169
  91. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 234
  92. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 242
  93. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 202
  94. ^ Jeldres (2005), pp. 205-6
  95. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 207
  96. ^ Jeldres (2005), pp. 197-8
  97. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 235
  98. ^ Jeldres (2005), p. 236
  99. ^ a b Osborne (1994), p. 251
  100. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 252
  101. ^ Mehta et al. (2013), pp. 154-5
  102. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 34
  103. ^ Post Staff (29 August 1989). "Final Cambodian talks under way". Lodi News-Sentinel. Retrieved 25 June 2015. 
  104. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 255
  105. ^ Findlay (1995), p. 7
  106. ^ Findlay (1995), p. 9
  107. ^ Findlay (1995), p. 12
  108. ^ Findlay (1995), p. 15
  109. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 142
  110. ^ Widyono (2008), pp. 82-3
  111. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 84
  112. ^ Findlay (1995), p. 46
  113. ^ Findlay (1995), p. 86
  114. ^ Findlay (1995), pp. 56-7
  115. ^ Findlay (1995), pp. 2, 84
  116. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 124
  117. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 125
  118. ^ a b Findlay (1995), p. 93
  119. ^ Mehta et al. (2013), p. 231
  120. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 129
  121. ^ Osborne (1994), p. 261
  122. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 161
  123. ^ Findlay (1995), p. 97
  124. ^ Jeldres (2003), p. 11
  125. ^ Widyono (2008), pp. 1844-5
  126. ^ Mehta et al. (2013), p. 232
  127. ^ Mehta et al. (2013), p. 233
  128. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 162
  129. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 163
  130. ^ Nate Thayer (15 July 1994). "Frantic calls from Regent's Rm 406". Phnom Penh Post. Retrieved 20 February 2015. 
  131. ^ Mehta et al. (2013), p. 246
  132. ^ Widyono (2008), pp. 184-5
  133. ^ Mehta et al. (2013), pp. 250-1
  134. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 216
  135. ^ Mehta et al. (2013), pp. 253
  136. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 215
  137. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 215
  138. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 223
  139. ^ Ker Munthit (21 March 1997). "Royal abdication threat ignites war of words". Phnom Penh Post. Retrieved 1 July 2015. 
  140. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 258
  141. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 259
  142. ^ Widyono (2008), p. 263
  143. ^ Post Staff (11 August 1997). "Cambodian King Sihanouk offers to abdicate". CNN. Retrieved 1 July 2015. 
  144. ^ Summers (2003), p. 238
  145. ^ Widyono (2008), pp. 167-8
  146. ^ Mehta et al. (2013), p. 302
  147. ^ Vong Sokheng (5 July 2002). "Succession issue troubles King". Phnom Penh Post. Retrieved 1 July 2015. 
  148. ^ Vong Sokheng and Robert Carmichael (27 September 2002). "King mulls abdication". Phnom Penh Post. Retrieved 1 July 2015. 
  149. ^ Chin (2005), p. 115
  150. ^ Susan Front, Sam Rith and Chhim Sopheark (29 August 2003). "Council rejects complaints by SRP, Funcinpec". Phnom Penh Post. Retrieved 5 July 2015. 
  151. ^ YUN SAMEAN AND LOR CHANDARA (17 September 2003). "King Won’t Convene New Parliament". The Cambodia Daily. Retrieved 5 July 2015. 
  152. ^ LOR CHANDARA AND WENCY LEUNG (19 September 2003). "King Advised To Convene Parliament". The Cambodia Daily. Retrieved 5 July 2015. 
  153. ^ Yun Samean (6 October 2003). "King Swears In Legislators Despite Standoff". The Cambodia Daily. Retrieved 5 July 2015. 
  154. ^ Chin (2005), pp. 117, 119, 127
  155. ^ Chin (2005), pp. 119-120
  156. ^ Sihanouk has retained cordial relations with North Korea since early 1960s, when he got acquainted Kim Il-sung at the movement of non-aligned countries. See also It should be noted that North Korea never recognized the Vietnamese-installed government in Cambodia, despite immense pressure from Moscow.
  157. ^ Cambodia's Ex-King Cites Progress Against His Cancer Yahoo news, 2 March 2009
  158. ^ a b "Cambodia former king Norodom Sihanouk dies aged 89". BBC News. 15 October 2012. 
  159. ^ a b c d Cheang, Sopheng (15 October 2012). "Cambodia's former King Norodom Sihanouk dies at 89". NBC News. Associated Press. Retrieved 15 October 2012. 
  160. ^ a b "Cambodia expresses grieves at the death of King-Father Norodom Sihanouk". China News. 15 October 2012. Retrieved 15 October 2012. 
  161. ^ CHEANG, SOPHENG. "Cambodians line streets to see ex-king's body". Associated Press. Retrieved 18 October 2012. 
  162. ^
  163. ^ [1]
  164. ^ "Cambodia Unveils Statue of Former King Norodom Sihanouk". VOA Khmer. 11 October 2013. Retrieved 18 December 2013. 
  165. ^ Royal Ark
  166. ^ Boletín Oficial del Estado
  167. ^ "5th Moscow International Film Festival (1967)". MIFF. Retrieved 2012-12-09. 
  168. ^ "Shadow Over Angkor". MTV. Retrieved 2012-12-12. 
  169. ^ "CAMBOA19". Retrieved 15 October 2012. 
  170. ^ "IMDB: Norodom Sihanouk". Retrieved 26 December 2013. 



  • Burchett, William G. and Norodom, Sihanouk (1973). My War with the CIA: Cambodia's fight for survival. United States of America: Penguin Books. ISBN 0140216898. 
  • Chin, Kin Wah (2005). Southeast Asian Affairs 2005. National University of Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies. ISBN 9812303065. 
  • Findlay, Trevor (1995). Cambodia – The Legacy and Lessons of UNTAC–SIPRI Research Report No. 9 (PDF). Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. Solna, Sweden: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0198291868. 
  • Jeldres, Julio A (2003). The Royal House of Cambodia. Phnom Penh Cambodia: Monument Books. OCLC 54003889. 
  • Jeldres, Julio A (2005). Volume 1–Shadows Over Angkor: Memoirs of His Majesty King Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia. Phnom Penh Cambodia: Monument Books. ISBN 974926486X. 
  • Marlay, Ross and Neher, Clark D. (1999). Patriots and Tyrants: Ten Asian Leaders. Lanham, Maryland, United States of America: Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 0847684423. 
  • Mehta, Harish C. & Julie B. (2013). Strongman: The Extraordinary Life of Hun Sen: The Extraordinary Life of Hun Sen. Singapore: Marshall Cavendish International Asia Pte Ltd. ISBN 9814484601. 
  • Osborne, Milton E (1994). Sihanouk Prince of Light, Prince of Darkness. Honolulu, Hawaii, United States of America: University of Hawaii Press. ISBN 978-0-8248-1639-1. 
  • Peou, Sorpong (2000). Intervention and Change in Cambodia: Towards Democracy?. National University of Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies. ISBN 9812300422. 
  • Summers, Laura (2003). The Far East and Australasia 2003. New York, United States of America: Psychology Press. pp. 227–243. ISBN 1857431332. 
  • Widyono, Benny (2008). Dancing in Shadows: Sihanouk, the Khmer Rouge, and the United Nations in Cambodia. Lanham, Maryland, United States of America: Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 0742555534. 


External links[edit]

Regnal titles
Preceded by
Sisowath Monivong
King of Cambodia
Succeeded by
Norodom Suramarit
Preceded by
Chea Sim
(Chairman of the Council of State)
King of Cambodia
Succeeded by
Norodom Sihamoni
Political offices
Preceded by
New office
Prime Minister of Cambodia
Succeeded by
Son Ngoc Thanh
Preceded by
Yem Sambaur
Prime Minister of Cambodia
Succeeded by
Sisowath Monipong
Preceded by
Huy Kanthoul
Prime Minister of Cambodia
Succeeded by
Penn Nouth
Preceded by
Chan Nak
Prime Minister of Cambodia
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Penn Nouth
Preceded by
Leng Ngeth
Prime Minister of Cambodia
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Oum Chheang Sun
Preceded by
Oum Chheang Sun
Prime Minister of Cambodia
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Khim Tit
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Khim Tit
Prime Minister of Cambodia
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San Yun
Preceded by
San Yun
Prime Minister of Cambodia
Succeeded by
Sim Var
Preceded by
Sim Var
Prime Minister of Cambodia
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Pho Proeung
Preceded by
Norodom Suramarit
Head of State of Cambodia
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Cheng Heng
Preceded by
Penn Nouth
Prime Minister of Cambodia
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Nhiek Tioulong
Preceded by
Sak Sutsakhan
President of the State Presidium
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Khieu Samphan