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Navy commander Tea Vinh (Tea Vinh’s Facebook page)

US Ratchets Up Sanctions Pressure on Cambodia

Overnight, the U.S. sanctioned two more Cambodian military figures, announced a review of Cambodia’s trade benefits, and warned U.S. businesses of exposure to rights-abusing, criminal and corrupt Cambodian entities, as the country had made “no meaningful changes” to repeatedly raised concerns.

Demonstrators, including activist Sath Pha (front center), rally outside the U.S. Embassy in Phnom Penh on October 23, 2020 (Mech Dara/VOD)

US Lawmakers Call for More Sanctions Against Cambodia

Citing an “alarming deterioration” in Cambodia’s democratic rule, a group of U.S. politicians appealed to their government to ramp up sanctions against Phnom Penh, as analysts said pressure from the U.S. was likely to rise with the coming change in administration.

Prime Minister Hun Sen speaks at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh on January 31, 2020, in this photograph posted to Hun Sen’s Facebook page.

Hun Sen: Foreign Pressure Forces Cambodia to Choose Friends, Enemies

Pressure from foreign states was forcing Cambodia to choose friends and enemies in the international arena, Prime Minister Hun Sen said on Friday, repeating his frequent claim that the government would not exchange its sovereignty for aid from any country.

Prime Minister Hun Sen votes on July 29, 2018 in Kandal province. (VOD)

Analysis: Observers Expect Political Quagmire to Drag On in 2020

What lies ahead for Cambodian politics this year is a prolonging of the political quagmire that has dragged down the country for at least two years, according to analysts. Things could eventually improve, but there is no quick fix, they say.

Government spokesman Phay Siphan at the Council of Ministers in Phnom Penh (file photo)

Government Spokesman Accuses US of Backing Rainsy-Led ‘Terrorism’

The dissolved opposition party has reorganized and raised funds in the U.S., a situation that amounts to U.S. support for a “terrorist movement,” government spokesman Phay Siphan said on Thursday, the morning after the new U.S. ambassador to Cambodia landed in Phnom Penh.

Kem Sokha (right), with his wife Te Chanmono (left) and his mother Sao Nget, at his Phnom Penh home the day after he was released from Correctional Center 3 prison in September 2018. (Chhea Bunnarith)

Ministry to US: Kem Sokha in ‘Comfort of His Home’

Cambodia’s Foreign Affairs Ministry on Tuesday responded to a video from the U.S. State Department, which called opposition leader Kem Sokha’s ongoing detention without trial “baseless,” by noting that Sokha had been released from prison to the “comfort of his home” a year ago.