While Buddhism arrived in Cambodia around the 3rd to 5th century, for the first thousand years of the Khmer empire, the country was ruled by a succession of Hindu kings with the occasional Buddhist king. The Hindu influence can be seen in the art and architecture of Angkor Wat, the largest Hindu temple in the world. Around the 7th century, Islam arrived with the Cham Muslims of the Mekong delta. The Chams suffered greatly during the Pol Pot regime (Khmer Rouge), leading to a rebellion against the regime. Christianity made little impact on Cambodia until the 20th century. Many Khmer Christians being converted while in refugee camps on the Thai border.

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