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Yearbook 2015

Cambodia. According to COUNTRYAAH, Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen noted in January that he held the post for 30 years. The 62-year-old showed no signs of wanting to step down. On the anniversary, he highlighted the country's strong economic growth and that he had made peace. It was in response to criticism from the opposition and human rights groups against his authoritarian rule.

2015 Cambodia

In June, the ruling Cambodian People's Party (CCP) elected Hun Sen as party leader since longtime party leader Chea Sim passed away. Chea Sim was also President of the Senate.

Relations between CCP and opposition party CNRP (Cambodia's National Rescue Party) deteriorated after thawing in 2014. Eleven CNRP activists were sentenced in July to long prison sentences for "rioting", almost a year after participating in a demonstration against the disputed 2013 election results. received 20 years in prison.

In October, a large crowd gathered outside Parliament demanding that one of the Deputy Speaker of the House, CNRP's Kem Sokha, be dismissed. Hun Sen had condemned him since he claimed that CNRP would win the next election. Two of the CNRP's MPs were beaten when they arrived at the scene without police intervention. Shortly thereafter, Kem Sokha was dismissed from the post.

The following month, a special parliamentary committee decided that CNRP leader Sam Rainsy would lose his freedom of charge. A court had requested him detained since he was sentenced in 2011 in his absence for slander by a leading CPP politician. The verdict was considered politically motivated.

The UN special envoy for Cambodia, Rhona Smith, as well as UN chief Ban Ki Moon criticized the development and urged the parties to dialogue.

Other examples of the government's pressure on critical votes were that Parliament passed a law that forces individual organizations to be politically neutral and that they can be fined or banned if they offend politicians. Critics fear that the law intends to silence activists who pay attention to abuse or theft.

Minimum wages were raised by almost 10% in the economically important textile industry, which employs approximately 700,000 people. The unions had demanded higher increases. There were continued reports of serious malfunctions in some factories.

During the year, Cambodia received five refugees in accordance with a contentious refugee program concluded in 2014 with Australia. The refugees were transferred from a camp on the Pacific island of Nauru.

In March, the UN-backed tribunal charged two leaders in the Red Khmer for murder and slavery during the 1975-79 terrorist violence. In August, former Minister of Social Affairs Ieng Thirith, who was married to late Foreign Minister Ieng Sary, passed away. She was considered to be the most influential woman in the leadership of the Red Khmer. Ieng Thirith was charged with, among other things, genocide but in 2011 had been declared too dementia-sick to be brought to justice.

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