Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Apsara fires back at villager accusations

Apsara fires back at villager accusations

Apsara fires back at villager accusations

Describing complainants as opportunists, the Apsara Authority on Sunday rejected allegations that it has not complied with a sub-decree ordering it to return 220 hectares of land to local villagers in Siem Reap province.

The authority, which manages the Angkor temple complex, is in the planning stages of developing more than 1,000 hectares of land for tourism. In April, Prime Minister Hun Sen ordered it to reduce the size of the development so that 727 families in Ampil and Slakram communes can remain where they now live.

Apsara released a statement on Sunday refuting claims it had not properly implemented the sub-decree. “Saying that Apsara Authority has not complied with the government’s sub-decree is a completely false allegation, which has been made by opportunists,” the statement reads.

But local resident Yin Sokuntheary said yesterday that Apsara Authority has not returned at least seven plots of land. The authority requires villagers living on the disputed land to show ownership documentation.

“They accuse me of illegally occupying the land,” Sokuntheary said yesterday. “I have documentation and ask the national leaders to re-examine the case.”

Rights group Adhoc, which routinely sides with villagers in land disputes involving the government, yesterday offered something less than full-throated support for the villagers’ claims.

Staffer Suos Narin said that those complaining had, in fact, moved onto the land recently, as opposed to the majority, who have lived there for years.

“The people, local authorities and Apsara should seek peaceful solutions, rather than hurling accusations,” Narin said.


  • Breaking: PM says prominent human rights NGO ‘must close’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed the Interior Ministry to investigate the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR) and potentially close it “because they follow foreigners”, appearing to link the rights group to the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party's purported “revolution”. The CNRP - the

  • Rainsy and Sokha ‘would already be dead’: PM

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Sunday appeared to suggest he would have assassinated opposition leaders Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha had he known they were promising to “organise a new government” in the aftermath of the disputed 2013 national elections. In a clip from his speech

  • Massive ceremony at Angkor Wat will show ‘Cambodia not in anarchy’: PM

    Government officials, thousands of monks and Prime Minister Hun Sen himself will hold a massive prayer ceremony at Angkor Wat in early December to highlight the Kingdom’s continuing “peace, independence and political stability”, a spectacle observers said was designed to disguise the deterioration of

  • PM tells workers CNRP is to blame for any sanctions

    In a speech to workers yesterday, Prime Minister Hun Sen pinned the blame for any damage inflicted on Cambodia’s garment industry by potential economic sanctions squarely on the opposition party. “You must remember clearly that if the purchase orders are reduced, it is all