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Sebastian Strangio: Cambodia's troubling return to de facto one-party rule

China-backed authoritarianism is on the rise in Asia as the US retreats

Police officers stand guard at the Supreme Court in Phnom Penh on Nov. 16 during a hearing prior to the ruling to dissolve the main opposition party.   © Reuters

With the stroke of a judge's pen, political opposition to Cambodia's long-ruling prime minister, Hun Sen, has effectively ceased to exist. On Nov. 16, the country's Supreme Court did what most observers expected and ordered the dissolution of the popular Cambodia National Rescue Party, two months after the arrest of its leader, Kem Sokha, on treason charges. The court also handed out five-year political bans to 118 leading CNRP members.

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