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Cambodia election board confirms ruling party win

Cambodia's election commission has confirmed the ruling party as the winners of the country's July 28 vote. The hotly disputed contest was marred by opposition claims of poll fraud.

The government-appointed National Election Committee announced the results Sunday on state television, giving 68 National Assembly seats to Prime Minister Hun Sen's Cambodian People's Party (CPP) and 55 to the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP).

The ruling party won 3.2 million votes in total, compared to the CNRP's 2.9 million. The CPP has been in power for 28 years, but Sunday's tally marks the party's worst election performance since 1998.

The opposition had called into question the July 28 election, saying it would have won a majority had the vote been fair. The election board's final ruling brings an end to the official appeals process, but opposition leader Sam Rainsy was quick to reject it Sunday, saying efforts to overturn the result would continue.

"We do not accept the results that do not reflect the will of the people. These votes are the results of voter fraud," he told the AFP news agency. "We will protest the results in different ways because the current political situation is not like in the past. We need … to find a reasonable solution."

Around 20,000 opposition supporters gathered in the Cambodian capital Phnom Penh on Saturday calling for an investigation into the election.

dr/tj (AFP, AP)