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The kingdom is an elective constitutional monarchy with Norodom Sihamoni, a monarch chosen by the Royal Throne Council, as head of state.

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The country's minority groups include Vietnamese, Chinese, Chams, and 30 hill tribes.

The capital and largest city is Phnom Penh, the political, economic, and cultural centre of Cambodia.

Iron was worked by about 500 BC, with supporting evidence coming from the Khorat Plateau, in modern-day Thailand.

In Cambodia, some Iron Age settlements were found beneath Baksei Chamkrong and other Angkorian temples while circular earthworks were found beneath Lovea a few kilometres north-west of Angkor.

The Khmer Rouge emerged as a major power, taking Phnom Penh in 1975 and later carrying out the Cambodian Genocide from 1975 until 1979, when they were ousted by Vietnam and the Vietnamese-backed People's Republic of Kampuchea supported by the Soviet Union in the Cambodian–Vietnamese War (1979–91).

Following the 1991 Paris Peace Accords, Cambodia was governed briefly by a United Nations mission (1992–93).The Indianized kingdom built monumental temples including Angkor Wat, now a World Heritage Site, and facilitated the spread of first Hinduism, then Buddhism to much of Southeast Asia.After the fall of Angkor to Ayutthaya in the 15th century, a reduced and weakened Cambodia was then ruled as a vassal state by its neighbours.The English "Cambodia" is an anglicisation of the French "Cambodge", which in turn is the French transliteration of the Khmer Kampuchea.Kampuchea is the shortened alternative to the country's official name in Khmer, Preah Reacheanachak Kampuchea (Khmer: ព្រះរាជាណាចក្រកម្ពុជា).During the 3rd, 4th, and 5th centuries, the Indianised states of Funan and its successor, Chenla, coalesced in present-day Cambodia and southwestern Vietnam.

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