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Profiles of Cambodian Candidates

July 24, 1998

The main party leaders in Cambodia’s parliamentary elections Sunday:

_HUN SEN: Supremely self-confident, Cambodia’s current leader Hun Sen, 47, is viewed as one of the country’s most astute politicians. Hun Sen learned politics as a Khmer Rouge cadre and came to power in 1985 under the Vietnamese military occupation that followed them. He deposed his co-prime minister, Prince Norodom Ranariddh, in a violent takeover last year.

_PRINCE NORODOM RANARIDDH: Seeking to regain the post he lost in last year’s coup, Ranariddh’s main asset is his bloodline. The 54-year-old’s FUNCINPEC party represents Cambodia’s royalists and adoring crowds pay obeisance they wouldn’t give an ordinary politician.

_SAM RAINSY: French-educated economist Sam Rainsy, 49, is running at the head of a party named for himself, painting himself as the would-be voice of clean government and friend of the working man. He narrowly escaped an apparent assassination attempt last year, which he blamed on Hun Sen.

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