President of the main opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) Sam Rainsy on July 20 stated that his party has accepted a national election on February 2018 in exchange for the establishment of a new National Election Committee (NEC).

According to the, Rainsy posted on his Facebook page a joint statement stamped by both the CNRP and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP), which said the two parties agreed to join a final talks on July 22 to discuss measures to end the post-election dispute from July last year.

CNRP spokesman Yim Sovann told the media that the statement was genuine.

Interior Ministry secretary of state Prum Sokha, who has led the ruling party delegation in past talks, also confirmed the statement.

The next national election had been scheduled for July 2018, and the CNRP was pushing for a new election as soon as possible.

Political dispute between the ruling and opposition parties has simmered since the results of the parliamentary elections in July last year showed that the CPP won 68 seats against 55 seats taken by the CNRP.

However, the CNRP refused to accept the results claiming serious irregularities during the poll, and demanded the establishment of an independent committee to investigate the election outcome. It has boycotted parliament and held many protests demanding for a re-election.

The two sides have held many meetings, including the top-level one between Prime Minister Hun Sen and Rainsy in September last year, however, they did not reach any significant breakthrough on those occasions.-VNA