Cambodia, China’s closest ally in south-east Asia, looks to ‘reset ties’ with US

Cambodia has indicated a desire to shift out of the shadow of Chinese patronage and pursue a closer relationship with the United States amid a landmark visit to Phnom Penh by US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman.

Increasingly viewed as a vassal of China in its pursuit of regional hegemony, there are signs emerging of discomfort from within the one-party south-east Asian nation about its over-dependence on the superpower.

The visit of Sherman, scheduled for Tuesday, coincided with a column from Cambodia’s state-owned news agency highlighted on social media by Prime Minister Hun Sen. It said it was “time for the US and Cambodia, in China’s shadow, to reset ties”.

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