Cambodian leaders reacted testily yesterday to US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright's decision to cancel a visit due to security concerns. The First Prime Minister, Prince Norodom Ranariddh, said he was 'very regretful' Ms Albright had called off the trip 'because I wanted to meet her and talk about a number of major issues'. US State Department spokesman Nicholas Burns said Cambodia's security situation was 'serious and unpredictable' and would not have permitted the type of visit the Secretary of State wanted. Ms Albright was to have arrived in Phnom Penh on Saturday for two days of political talks. She had proposed cutting back her trip to a Phnom Penh airport 'lounge-only' meeting, in light of continuing unrest in the capital. Cambodia's feuding co-premiers said they had rejected the offer. The State Department then cancelled the visit as part of an Asian tour. 'She needs a maximum level of security for her trip, she won't even go to the Council of Ministers, she just wanted to come to the airport,' Prince Ranariddh said. 'Second Prime Minister Hun Sen and I agreed that would break protocol principles and breach Cambodian sovereignty. 'I know the United States is a big country, but she is just foreign affairs level, and if we had gone out to meet her at the airport it would have given the impression Cambodia is insecure.' A spokesman for Mr Hun Sen, State Secretary for Information Khieu Kanharith, said the Government 'deeply regretted' Ms Albright's decision and said he believed it reflected that US foreign affairs priorities were focused 'outside the Asian region'. Mr Kanharith said rallies outside the US Embassy, which would have embarrassed Ms Albright, were more problematic than security concerns. Opposition parties and affiliated trade unions intended to demand the US cancel trade concessions unless Cambodian labour laws were enforced. A diplomatic source cited the accidental B-40 rocket bombing of the US ambassadors' residence on June 17 as occurring at a 'very inopportune time'. A March 30 grenade attack on an opposition party rally in the capital had also raised fears about rallies scheduled during Ms Albright's visit, he said. Special envoys of the French and Japanese governments, which Group of Seven most-industrialised countries dispatched to deliver a message of concern about Cambodia's declining political situation, met the two prime ministers in separate meetings yesterday. Yukio Imagawa, a former Japanese ambassador to Cambodia, and Claude Martin, Deputy Secretary-General of the French Foreign Ministry, called on Cambodia's leaders to make concrete election plans, Mr Hun Sen's spokesman said. Madeleine Albright arrived in Vietnam yesterday at the start of a two-day visit aimed at strengthening ties between the former enemies. She was greeted on arrival at Hanoi's Noi Bai airport by Vice-Foreign Minister Nguyen Dinh Bin and the new US Ambassador to Hanoi, Pete Peterson. Her official activities begin today. Ms Albright's visit comes two years after her predecessor, Warren Christopher, visited Hanoi on a breakthrough trip to officiate at ceremonies marking the normalisation of diplomatic ties between Vietnam and the US.