|Kingdom of Cambodia -
ព្រះរាជាណាចក្រកម្ពុជា - |
Preăh Réachéa Anachâk Kâmpŭchéa
|Flag - Coat of arms
"Nation, Religion, King"
|Location of - Cambodia - (green - ) -
(and largest city) - Phnom Penh
11°33′N - 104°55′E - / - 11.55°N 104.917°E - / 11.55;104.917 - -
|Official language(s) - Khmer
||Official script - Khmer script
||Demonym - Khmer or Cambodian
||Government - Constitutional monarchy,|
|Monarch - Norodom Sihamoni
||Prime Minister - Hun Sen
||Legislature - Parliament
||Upper House - Senate
||Lower House - National Assembly
||Khmer Empire - 802
||French Colonization - 1863
||Independence from France - November 9, 1953
||Khmer Republic - March 18, 1970
||Monarchy Restored - September 24, 1993
||Total - 181,035 km (88th)|
69,898 sq mi
|Water (%) - 2.5
||2010 estimate - 14,805,000 - 1 ] - - (66th
||2008 census - 13,388,910
||Density - 81.8/km (125th)|
|GDP (PPP) - 2009 estimate
||Total - $28.092 billion - 2 ] -
||Per capita - $2,084 - 2 ] -
||GDP (nominal) - 2009 estimate
||Total - $11.453 billion - 2 ] -
||Per capita - $805 - 2 ] -
||HDI (2007) - - 0.593 - 3 ] - - ( medium - ) (137th
||Currency - Riel (||Time zone - (UTC+7) -
||Drives on the - right
||Internet TLD - .kh
||Calling code - 855
||This article contains Indic text. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks or boxes, misplaced vowels or missing conjuncts instead of Indic text.
||The Kingdom of Cambodia, formerly known as Kampuchea, Khmer:ព្រះរាជាណាចក្រកម្ពុជា - or Preăh Réachéa Nachâk Kâmpŭchéa - , derived from SanskritKambujadesa - (कम्बोजदेश - )), is a country in Southeast Asia that borders Thailand to the west and northwest, Laos to the north, Vietnam to the east, and the Gulf of Thailand to the south. The geography of Cambodia is dominated by the Mekong River (Khmer:Tonle Thom - (ទន្លេធំ - ) or "the great river") and the Tonlé Sap (ទន្លេសាប - ;"the fresh water lake").
||The kingdom is a constitutional monarchy with Norodom Sihamoni as king who has reign since 2004. Phnom Penh is the kingdom's capital and largest city, and is the center of political, commercial, industrial and cultural activities. Siem Reap, a city located near the famous ruins of Angkor Wat is the gateway to the Angkor region, and is Cambodia's main destination for tourism. Battambang, the largest city in western Cambodia, is known for its rice production, and Sihanoukville, a coastal city, is the primary sea port and beach resort.
||Cambodia has an area of 181,035 square kilometres (69,898 sq mi) and a population of over 14 million ethnic Khmer. A citizen of Cambodia is usually identified as "Cambodian" or "Khmer", though they strictly refer to ethnic Khmers. Most Cambodians are Theravada Buddhists, but the country also have a minority number of MuslimCham, as well as ethnic Chinese, Vietnamese and small animist hill tribes. - 4 ] - -
||Agriculture has long been the most important sector to the Cambodian economy, with around 59% of the population relying on agriculture for their livelihood (with rice being the principal crop). - 5 ] - - Other important sectors include garments, construction and tourism - foreign visitors to Angkor Wat numbered more than 4 million in 2007. - 6 ] - - In 2005, oil and natural gas deposits were found beneath Cambodia's territorial waters, and once commercial extraction begins in 2011, the oil revenues could profoundly affect Cambodia's economy. - 7 ] - -
||2.1 - Prehistory -
||2.2 - Pre-Angkorian and Angkorian polities -
||2.3 - Dark ages of Cambodia -
||2.4 - Modernity and French Indochina -
||2.5 - Independence and Vietnam War -
||2.6 - Khmer Rouge rule -
||2.7 - End of Khmer Rouge rule and transition -
||2.8 - Restoration of the constitutional monarchy -
||3 - Politics and government -
||4 - Armed forces -
||5 - Geography -
||5.1 - Climate -
||6 - Administrative divisions -
||6.1 - City and province sizes -
||7 - Foreign relations -
||8 - Wildlife of Cambodia -
||9 - Economy -
||10 - Demographics -
||10.1 - Health -
||11 - Culture and society -
||12 - Transport -
||13 - See also -
||14 - Notes -
|| - Etymology -
||Name of Cambodia
||Cambodia is the traditional English name, taken from the French Cambodge , while Kâmpŭchea (កម្ពុជា), formerly the name of the country in English, it is the direct transliteration, more faithful to the Khmer pronunciation. The Khmer Kampuchea is derived from the ancient Khmer kingdom of Kambuja (Kambujadeśa - (कम्बोजदेश;"Land of Kambuja")). Kambuja or Kamboja (Devangari:कम्बोज) is the ancient Sanskrit name of the Kambojas, an early tribe of north India, named after their founder Kambu Svayambhuva, believed to be a variant of Cambyses. See Etymology of Kamboja.
||Khmer Land" in Khmer writing, a local expression which refers to Cambodia
||Preahreachanachâk Kampuchea means "Kingdom of Cambodia". Etymologically, its components are:Preah- ("sacred");-reach- ("king, royal, realm", from Sanskrit);-ana- (from Pāliāṇā - , "authority, command, power", itself from Sanskrit ājñā - , same meaning) -châk (from Sanskrit chakra , meaning "wheel", a symbol of power and rule).
||The name used on formal occasions, such as political speeches and news programs, is Prâteh Kampuchea (Khmer:ប្រទេសកម្ពុជា - ), literally "the Country of Cambodia". Prâteh is a formal word meaning "country." The colloquial name most used by Khmer people, is Srok Khmae (Khmer:ស្រុកខ្មែរ - ), literally "the Khmer Land". Srok is a Mon-Khmer word roughly equal to prâteh , but less formal. Khmer is spelled with a final "r" in the Khmer alphabet, but the word-final "r" phoneme disappeared from most dialects of Khmer in the 19th century and is not pronounced in the contemporary speech of the standard dialect.
||Since original independence, the official name of Cambodia has changed several times, following the troubled history of the country. The following names have been used in English and French since 1954.
||Kingdom of Cambodia /Royaume du Cambodge under the rule of the monarchy from 1953 through 1970;
||Khmer Republic /République Khmère under the Lon Nol led government from 1970 to 1975;
||Democratic Kampuchea /Kampuchea démocratique under the rule of the communist Khmer Rouge from 1975 to 1979;
||People's Republic of Kampuchea /République populaire du Kampuchea under the rule of the Vietnamese-sponsored government from 1979 to 1989;
||State of Cambodia /État du Cambodge (a neutral name, while deciding whether to return to monarchy) after the collapse of the Eastern Bloc and under the rule of the United Nations transitional authority from 1989 to 1993;
||Kingdom of Cambodia /Royaume du Cambodge reused after the restoration of the monarchy in 1993.
|| - History -
||History of Cambodia
||A Khmer army going to war against the Cham, from a relief on the Bayon
|| - Prehistory
||The sparse evidence for a Pleistocene human occupation of present day Cambodia are quartz and quartzite pebble tools found in terraces along Mekong River, in Stung Treng and Kratié provinces, and in Kampot Province, but their dating is not reliable. - 9 ] - -
||Some slight archaeological evidence shows communities of hunter-gatherers inhabited Cambodia during Holocene:the most ancient Cambodian archeological site is considered to be the cave of Laang Spean , in Battambang Province, which belongs to the so-called Hoabinhian period. Excavations in its lower layers produced a series of radiocarbon dates as of 6000 BC. - 9 ] - - - 10 ] - -
||Upper layers in the same site gave evidence of transition to Neolithic, containing the earliest dated earthenware ceramics in Cambodia
||Archeological records for the period between Holocene and Iron Age remain equally limited. Other prehistoric sites of somewhat uncertain date are Samrong Sen (not far from ancient capital of Oudong), where first investigations started just in 1877, - 12 ] - - and Phum Snay , in the northern province of Banteay Meanchey. Prehistoric artifacts are often found during mining activities in Ratanakiri. - 9 ] - -
||The most outstanding prehistoric evidence in Cambodia however are probably "circular earthworks", discovered in the red soils near Memot and in adjacent region of Vietnam as of the end of the 1950s. Their function and age are still debated, but some of them possibly date from 2nd millennium BC at least. - 15 ] - -
||A pivotal event in Cambodian prehistory was the slow penetration of the first rice farmers from North, which begun in the late 3rd millennium BC. They probably spoke ancestral Mon-Khmer. - 16 ] - -
||Iron was worked by about 500 BC. The most part of evidence come from Khorat Plateau, Thai country nowadays. In Cambodia some Iron Age settlement were found beneath Angkorian temples, like Baksei Chamkrong, others were circular earthworks, like Lovea , a few kilometers north-west of Angkor. Burials, much richer, testify improvement of food availability and trade (even on long distances:in the 4th century BC trade relations with India were already opened) and the existence of a social structure and labor organization. - 16 ] - -
|| - Pre-Angkorian and Angkorian polities -
||Southeast Asia circa 1100 AD. Khmer Empire lands in light grey
||During the 3rd, 4th, and 5th centuries, the Indianised states of Funan and Chenla coalesced in what is now present-day Cambodia and southwestern Vietnam. These states are assumed by most scholars to have been Khmer. - 17 ] - - For more than 2,000 years, Cambodia absorbed influences from India and China passing them on to other Southeast Asian civilisations that are now Thailand, Vietnam, and Laos. - 18 ] - - The Khmer Empire flourished in the area from the 9th to the 13th century. - 19 ] - - Around the 13th century, Theravada Buddhism was introduced to the area through monks from Sri Lanka. - 20 ] - - From then on Theravada Buddhism grew and eventually became the most popular religion. The Khmer Empire declined yet remained powerful in the region until the 15th century. The empire's centre of power was Angkor, where a series of capitals was constructed during the empire's zenith. Angkor could have supported a population of up to one million people. - 21 ] - - Angkor, the world's largest pre-industrial settlement complex, - 22 ] - - and Angkor Wat, the most famous and best-preserved religious temple at the site, are reminders of Cambodia's past as a major regional power.
|| - Dark ages of Cambodia
||After a long series of wars with neighboring kingdoms, Angkor was sacked by the Ayutthaya Kingdom and abandoned in 1432 because of ecological failure and infrastructure breakdown. - 23 ] - - - 24 ] - - The court moved the capital to Lovek where the kingdom sought to regain its glory through maritime trade. The attempt was short-lived however, as continued wars with the Ayutthaya and Vietnamese resulted in the loss of more territory and Lovek being conquered in 1594. During the next three centuries, the Khmer kingdom alternated as a vassal state of the Ayutthaya Kingdom and Vietnamese kings, as well as short-lived periods of relative independence. ]
|| - Modernity and French Indochina -
||King Norodom is credited for saving Cambodia from disappearing altogether
||In 1863, King Norodom, who had been installed by Thailand, - 25 ] - - sought the protection of France from the Thai and Vietnamese, after tensions grew between them. In 1867, the Thai king signed a treaty with France, renouncing suzerainty over Cambodia in exchange for the control of Battambang and Siem Reap provinces which officially became part of Thailand. The provinces were ceded back to Cambodia by a border treaty between France and Thailand in 1906.
||Cambodia continued as a protectorate of France from 1863 to 1953, administered as part of the colony of French Indochina, though occupied by the Japanese empire from 1941 to 1945. - 26 ] - - After King Norodom's death in 1904, France manipulated the choice of king and Sisowath, Norodom's brother, was placed on the throne. The throne became vacant in 1941 with the death of Monivong, Sisowath's son, and France passed over Monivong's son, Monireth, feeling he was too independently minded. Instead, Norodom Sihanouk, a maternal grand-son of king Sisowath, who was eighteen years old at the time, was enthroned. The French thought young Sihanouk would be easy to control. - 26 ] - - They were wrong, however, and under the reign of King Norodom Sihanouk, Cambodia gained independence from France on November 9, 1953. - 26 ] - -
|| - Independence and Vietnam War
||Cambodia became a constitutional monarchy under King Norodom Sihanouk. When French Indochina was given independence, Cambodia lost official control over the Mekong Delta as it was awarded to Vietnam. The area had been controlled by the Vietnamese since 1698 with King Chey Chettha II granting Vietnamese permission to settle in the area decades before. - 26 ] - -
||In 1955, Sihanouk abdicated in favour of his father in order to be elected Prime Minister. Upon his father's death in 1960, Sihanouk again became head of state, taking the title of Prince. As the Vietnam War progressed, Sihanouk adopted an official policy of neutrality in the Cold War. However, Cambodians began to take sides, and he was ousted in 1970 by a military coup led by Prime Minister General Lon Nol and Prince Sisowath Sirik Matak with the back-up support of the United States, while on a trip abroad. Settling in the next alternative country, Beijing, China, Sihanouk was forced to realign himself with the Chinese communists. Soon the Khmer Rouge rebels would use him for gaining territory in the regions. The King urged his followers to help in overthrowing the pro-United States government of Lon Nol, hastening the onset of civil war. - 27 ] - -
||Between 1969 and 1973, Republic of Vietnam forces and U.S. forces bombed and briefly invaded Cambodia in an effort to disrupt the Viet Cong and Khmer Rouge. - 28 ] - - Some two million Cambodians were made refugees by the war and fled to Phnom Penh. Estimates of the number of Cambodians killed during the bombing campaigns vary widely, as do views of the effects of the bombing. The US Seventh Air Force argued that the bombing prevented the fall of Phnom Penh in 1973 by killing 16,000 of 25,500 Khmer Rouge fighters besieging the city. - 29 ] - - However, journalist William Shawcross and Cambodia specialists Milton Osborne, David P. Chandler and Ben Kiernan argued that the bombing drove peasants to join the Khmer Rouge. - 30 ] - - Cambodia specialist Craig Etcheson argued that the Khmer Rouge "would have won anyway", even without US intervention driving recruitment although the US secretly played a major role behind the leading cause of the Khmer Rouge.
|| - Khmer Rouge rule
||As the war ended, a draft US AID report observed that the country faced famine in 1975, with 75% of its draft animals destroyed, and that rice planting for the next harvest would have to be done "by the hard labour of seriously malnourished people". The report predicted that
|A stupa which houses the skulls of those killed at Choeung Ek
||The Khmer Rouge reached Phnom Penh and took power in 1975. The regime, led by Pol Pot, changed the official name of the country to Democratic Kampuchea. They immediately evacuated the cities and sent the entire population on forced marches to rural work projects. They attempted to rebuild the country's agriculture on the model of the 11th century, discarded Western medicine, and destroyed temples, libraries, and anything considered Western. Over a million Cambodians, out of a total population of 8 million, died from executions, overwork, starvation and disease. - 33 ] - -
||Estimates as to how many people were killed by the Khmer Rouge regime range from approximately one to three million. - 34 ] - - - 35 ] - - This era gave rise to the term Killing Fields, and the prison Tuol Sleng became notorious for its history of mass killing. Hundreds of thousands fled across the border into neighbouring Thailand. The regime disproportionately targeted ethnic minority groups. The Cham Muslims suffered serious purges with as much as half of their population exterminated. - 36 ] - - In the late 1960s, an estimated 425,000 ethnic Chinese lived in Cambodia, but by 1984, as a result of Khmer Rouge genocide and emigration, only about 61,400 Chinese remained in the country. - 37 ] - - The professions, such as doctors, lawyers, and teachers, were also targeted. According to Robert D. Kaplan, "eyeglasses were as deadly as the yellow star" as they were seen as a sign of intellectualism. - 33 ] - -
|| - End of Khmer Rouge rule and transition
||In November 1978, Vietnamese troops invaded Cambodia. - 38 ] - - The People's Republic of Kampuchea, a Pro-Soviet state led by the Salvation Front, a group of Cambodian leftists dissatisfied with the Khmer Rouge, was established.
||In 1981, 3 years after the Vietnamese invasion the country was divided up between a further three factions that the United Nations euphemistically referred to as the Coalition Government of Democratic Kampuchea. This consisted of the Khmer Rouge, a royalist faction led by Sihanouk, and the Khmer People's National Liberation Front. The Khmer Rouge representative to the United Nations, Thiounn Prasith was retained. - 39 ] - - - 40 ] - -
||Throughout the 1980s the Khmer Rouge, supplied by Thailand, the United States - 41 ] - - - 42 ] - - and the United Kingdom continued to control much of the country and attacked territory not under their dominance. These attacks, compounded by total economic sanctions - 44 ] - - from the United States and its allies, made reconstruction virtually impossible and left the country deeply impoverished.
||Peace efforts began in Paris in 1989 under the State of Cambodia, culminating two years later in October 1991 in a comprehensive peace settlement. The United Nations was given a mandate to enforce a ceasefire, and deal with refugees and disarmament known as the United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC). - 45 ] - -
|| - Restoration of the constitutional monarchy
||In recent years, reconstruction efforts have progressed and led to some political stability under the form of a multipartydemocracy under a constitutional monarchy. - 46 ] - - Norodom Sihanouk was restored as King of Cambodia in 1993.
||The stability established following the conflict was shaken in 1997 by a coup d'état, - 47 ] - - but has otherwise remained in place. Cambodia has been aided by a number of more developed nations like Japan, France, Germany, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, the United States and the United Kingdom. ]
|| - Politics and government -
||Politics of Cambodia
||King Norodom Sihamoni
||The politics of Cambodia formally take place, according to the nation's constitution of 1993, in the framework of a constitutional monarchy operated as a parliamentaryrepresentative democracy. The Prime Minister of Cambodia is the head of government, and of a pluriform multi-party system, while the king is the head of state.
||The Prime Minister is appointed by the King, on the advice and with the approval of the National Assembly;the Prime Minister and his or her ministerial appointees exercise executive power in government. Legislative power is vested in both the executive and the two chambers of parliament, the National Assembly of Cambodia and the Senate.
||On October 14, 2004, King Norodom Sihamoni was selected by a special nine-member throne council, part of a selection process that was quickly put in place after the surprise abdication of King Norodom Sihanouk a week before. Sihamoni's selection was endorsed by Prime Minister Hun Sen and National Assembly Speaker Prince Norodom Ranariddh (the king's half brother and current chief advisor), both members of the throne council. He was enthroned in Phnom Penh on October 29, 2004.
|| - Armed forces -
||Royal Cambodian Armed Forces
||The Royal Cambodian Armed Forces consists of the Royal Cambodian Army, the Royal Cambodian Navy, and the Royal Cambodian Air Force. The king is the Supreme Commander of the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces (RCAF) and the country's prime minister effectively holds the position of commander-in-chief. The introduction of a revised command structure early in 2000 was a key prelude to the reorganisation of the RCAF. This saw the ministry of national defence form three subordinate general departments responsible for logistics and finance, materials and technical services, and defence services. The High Command Headquarters (HCHQ) was left unchanged, but the general staff was dismantled and the former will assume responsibility over three autonomous infantry divisions. A joint staff was also formed, responsible for inter-service co-ordination and staff management within HCHQ.
||The minister of National Defence is General Tea Banh. Banh has served as defence minister since 1979. The Secretaries of State for Defence are Chay Saing Yun and Por Bun Sreu. In January 2009, General Ke Kim Yan was removed from his post as Commander-in-Chief of the RCAF and was replaced by his deputy, Gen. Pol Saroeun, the new Commander-in-Chief of the RCAF, who is a long time loyalist of Prime Minister Hun Sen. There were rumours that Prime Minister Hun Sen had plans to remove Ke Kim Yan from commander of RCAF because of an internal dispute in the CPP. Days later after the news broke out that Yan was being removed, members of the CPP Party said it was a regular reshuffle of the Kingdom's military leadership and that there are no internal problems within the CPP party. It is expected that Ke Kim Yan will be promoted to Deputy Prime Minister by Hun Sen and will be in charge of anti-drugs trafficking. The Army Commander is General Meas Sophea and the Army Chief of Staff is Chea Saran.
||Cambodian island of Koh Tonsay (Rabbit Island
|| - Geography -
||Geography of Cambodia
||Monsoon season in Kampong Speu Province
||Cambodia has an area of 181,035 square kilometers (69,898 sq mi) and lies entirely within the tropics. It borders Thailand to the north and west, Laos to the northeast, and Vietnam to the east and southeast. It has a 443-kilometer (275 mi) coastline along the Gulf of Thailand.
||The most distinctive geographical feature is the lacustrine plain, formed by the inundations of the Tonle Sap (Great Lake), measuring about 2,590 square kilometers (1,000 sq mi) during the dry season and expanding to about 24,605 square kilometers (9,500 sq mi) during the rainy season. This densely populated plain, which is devoted to wet rice cultivation, is the heartland of Cambodia. Much of this area has been designated as a biosphere reserve.
||Most (about 75%) of the country lies at elevations of less than 100 metres (330 ft) above sea level, the exceptions being the Cardamom Mountains (highest elevation 1,813 m / 5,948 ft) and their southeast extension the Dâmrei Mountains ("Elephant Mountains") (elevation range 500–1,000 m or 1,640–3,280 ft), as well the steep escarpment of the Dângrêk Mountains (average elevation 500 m / 1,640 ft) along the border with Thailand's Isan region. The highest elevation of Cambodia is Phnom Aoral, near Pursat in the center of the country, at 1,813 meters (5,948 ft).
|| - Climate -
||Climate of Cambodia