Dominating the Senate and all 1,646 commune councils except one, Cambodia has become a de facto one-party state. In December 2017 the Supreme Court ordered the dissolution of the largest and only viable opposition party CNRP. Further, intimidation and threats against independent actors have been highly effective, especially ahead of parliamentary elections.

The Cambodian economy remained widely unaffected by these political events. Economic growth – accompanied by respectable successes in poverty reduction – has been fuelled by Chinese investments, yet it is unclear whether this steady growth is sustainable.

Civil society organizations function under severe restrictions. Since 2015, several representatives and their families have fled Cambodia in fear of their safety.

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