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Southeast Asia's democracy deficit erodes bottom line

Institutional weakness and selfish elites undermine region's economic progress

| Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos
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Southeast Asia is experiencing a backsliding of democracy, with tighter military control, ethnic and religious intolerance and disregard of due processes.   © Reuters

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen is Southeast Asia's longest-serving elected leader. He recently warned there could be civil war if his ruling Cambodian People's Party lost national elections scheduled for mid-next year. "If war happens, let it be," he told a gathering of army veterans in early May.

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