>> Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen has claimed victory once again in the country's general elections, but the opposition isn't backing down yet. They say, what happened Sunday marked the death of democracy.>> It was to be a celebration of democracy where people would have exercised their right to choose their own government.
Unfortunately, that choice had already been made for them before polls opened.>> They're not alone in the outrage. The election was seen largely as a sham, with rights groups saying it was neither free nor fair because Hun Sen didn't really have any significant challengers. It's prompted swift international reaction.
The EU has threatened Cambodia with economic sanctions, while the White House says it's considering steps, including an expansion of visa restrictions on Cambodian officials. In a statement, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said, Sunday's vote failed to represent the will of the Cambodian people, adding that the election campaign was marred by threats from national and local leaders.
But Cambodian officials hit back, saying that the statement was an attempt to intimidate Cambodia. A government spokesperson told Reuters, this is against the Cambodians who went to vote to decide their own fate. That might not be the case as Reuters' Amy Lefevre reports.>> While the reaction from the people here in Phnom Penh at the ground, many are too scared to voice their real opinion because of what's happened over the last couple of months.
So the reaction today, a day after the general election, has been very muted. We haven't seen any unrest on the street, we haven't seen any great reaction to what happened yesterday apart from the outside world and from the main rights groups and political parties.>> The ruling party has won an estimated 100 out of 125 parliamentary seats, and more than 82% of those registered to vote cast a ballot.
The opposition had urged voters to boycott the elections, but the authorities warned, anyone doing so would be seen as a traitor.