Senate Approves Controversial ‘State of Emergency’ Law, Heads to Constitutional Council

The draft legislation, which passed the Senate – a deliberative body – without any amendments, would allow for the curbing of fundamental freedoms of movement, expression, association, and assembly – all enshrined in the Cambodian Constitution – and has been widely criticized by rights groups.

Senate spokesperson and Senator Mam Bunneang said the draft was passed by 54 of the 62 senators in the upper house, without any changes. Eight senators were absent.

He added that critics were looking at the law from a political viewpoint, rather than a national security perspective.

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