Cambodia rivals start shooting
Wednesday 18 June 1997
The fighting broke out late in the evening and continued past midnight. Beside automatic weapons fire, more than a dozen explosions, believed to be from rocket-propelled grenades, were heard.
About 100 police, loyal to Ranariddh's rival, Second Prime Minister Hun Sen, surrounded the house. It was not clear if Ranariddh was inside, though he normally stays there. A soldier loyal to his royalist party was reported killed.
One B-40 rocket landed in the nearby compound of US ambassador Kenneth Quinn, causing slight damage.
The fighting broke out at a time of heightened tensions in Cambodia, as the once fearsome Khmer Rouge rebel movement appeared to be on its last legs, with all but a few of its hardcore supporters preparing to make peace.
Ranariddh and Hun Sen have been vying for the support of the defecting guerrillas, who are considered a potentially powerful force ahead of elections scheduled for next year.
Earlier yesterday, the Khmer Rouge rebels hinted that their leader, Pol Pot, had been overthrown. Breaking nearly a week of silence, the guerrilla organisation accused Pol Pot, of "betrayal" in a clandestine radio broadcast.
The statement, which follows several days of fighting between rival Khmer Rouge factions, said the group had now "solved quietly" its internal problems and was ready to make peace.
However, there was no direct word on the fate of Pol Pot himself, the man whose brutal regime saw an estimated 2 million people die. "What is absolutely clear from this broadcast is that Pol Pot is no longer a player," one diplomat said.
A purge last week of Khmer Rouge commanders sympathetic to a proposed peace deal with the government is reported to have split the group, forcing Pol Pot and a 200 hardline loyalists to abandon their remote Anlong Veng stronghold.
- 2 Friends 20th anniversary: Alison Jackson photographs reunited cast
- 3 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 5 Free U2 album: How the most generous giveaway in music history turned into a PR disaster
Scottish independence: Despite defeat history may still point to Alex Salmond as the victor
Scottish independence referendum: Frankie Boyle reacts to nation's 'No' vote - 'To be fair, I've always hated Scotland'
Iranian blogger found guilty of insulting Prophet Mohammad on Facebook sentenced to death
Scottish referendum: Police struggle to control Unionist rally in Glasgow's George Square
Hitler’s former food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Scottish independence: The Queen breaks silence on referendum debate – as think tank warns of £14bn black hole if Scotland votes Yes
£75 - £90 per day + negotiable: Randstad Education Group: Are you a cover supe...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager (CIM, B2B, MS Offi...
£22000 - £25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly successful organisation wit...
£1 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Job Purpose To work closely with the he...