World News

    Cambodian Govt Claims Election Win With Reduced Majority

    The Cambodian government has claimed victory in Sunday's national election, indicating that longtime Prime Minister Hun Sen will extend his 28-year rule despite a strong challenge from a rejuvenated opposition.

    A government spokesman said Mr. Hun Sen's ruling Cambodian People's Party (CPP) won 68 seats in the nation's 123-member parliament -- a significant decline from the 90 seat majority it previously held.

    Spokesman Khieu Kanharith also said the main opposition Cambodian National Rescue Party (CNRP) took the remaining 55 seats, almost doubling the 29 seats it held in the outgoing parliament.

    There was no immediate confirmation from the National Election Committee, which began releasing vote tallies by district on state television late Sunday. Final election results were expected in several weeks.

    CNRP leader Sam Rainsy told a news conference that his opposition party is waiting for the official results and information from other sources before making an assessment of the election. He urged his supporters to remain calm. Sunday's vote was largely peaceful.



    Earlier, Rainsy's party issued a statement saying it was the winner of the election, but it later retracted that claim.

    Cambodian opposition activists have complained that the election was unfair, accusing Mr. Hun Sen of dominating media coverage and using government resources to try to manipulate the results in his favor.

    They also criticized the government for blocking Rainsy from standing or voting in the election despite enabling him to return to Cambodia from self-imposed exile days before the election. The government said Rainsy's registration for the election came too late.

    Rainsy had been in exile for four years, avoiding a trial in which he was sentenced to prison on criminal charges that he said were politically-motivated. Mr. Hun Sen said he arranged for a royal pardon of Rainsy, a longtime political rival, to promote national reconciliation.

    The opposition leader campaigned freely in the run-up to the vote and drew large crowds of supporters, suggesting his return had given a boost to the opposition. His party was formed by a recent merger of opposition factions.

    But, as Rainsy visited a polling station in the capital, Phnom Penh, to inspect the voting, he warned that people will stage protests if allegations of voting irregularities are proved to be true. Cambodian police blocked the streets around Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence as a precaution.

    Some rights activists said ink used to mark a voter's finger could be easily washed off, raising the risk of people voting twice. Others said the names of many eligible voters were missing from voter lists at polling booths.

    Mr. Hun Sen remains a popular figure in Cambodia, one of Southeast Asia's fastest growing economies. He campaigned on a decades-long record of leading the peaceful development of his nation after decades of turmoil that included the brutal 1975 to 1979 dictatorship of the communist Khmer Rouge.

    Sunday's election was Cambodia's fifth since 1993, when the United Nations helped the country to stage its first multiparty democratic vote.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora