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The extreme restrictions on civil and political rights implemented since 2017 intensified, with the new State of Emergency Law adding to a legal framework which severely impinges upon human rights. Human rights defenders, peaceful demonstrators and members of the banned opposition party continued to face harassment and intimidation through misuse of the justice system. Women’s rights came under sustained attack, as Prime Minister Hun Sen led a public campaign that used arbitrary interpretations of “tradition” and “culture” to curtail the rights of women. The ongoing anti-drug campaign led to widespread violations of fair trial rights. People arbitrarily detained in drug detention centres faced torture and other ill-treatment including inhumane living conditions. The economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic left tens of thousands of garment workers and others at risk of destitution, particularly those holding microfinance debts.

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Death penalty status

Abolitionist for all crimes

Does not use the death penalty


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