Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Base reignites Boeung Kak feud

Base reignites Boeung Kak feud

Sok Penhvuth, deputy governor of Phnom Penh’s Daun Penh district
Sok Penhvuth, deputy governor of Phnom Penh’s Daun Penh district, watches over the situation at Boeung Kak lake yesterday after a disagreement amongst villages turned violent. ELI MEIXLER

Base reignites Boeung Kak feud

A new military police station planned for the heart of Phnom Penh’s dissonant Boeung Kak neighbourhood that authorities say will better protect the area has left its residents at war.

On Saturday morning, supporters of high-profile activist Tep Vanny, who want plans for the base to be put on hold until a solution is reached on a 12.44-hectare concession area, clashed with supporters of rival activist Heng Mom, who believe the base will offer increased protection.

“We still stand for protesting … if Phnom Penh municipal authorities don’t give a proper solution to our Boeung Kak villagers. But we will not protest blindly like Tep Vanny’s group,” Mom told the Post yesterday.

Activist Nget Khun, 74, said she sustained head injuries after being pelted with stones by activist and Mom supporter Tol Srey Pov.

Khun, who shared a prison cell with Mom in 2012 when the pair were among 13 convicted of occupying state land and obstructing public officials, blamed the authorities.

“I think that those things were set up by the authorities to break our solidarity,” Khun said, adding that she has filed an official complaint against Srey Pov.

Srey Pov admitted to throwing rocks because Khun “pushed me to the ground and threw pebbles in my face”.

But Daun Penh district Deputy Governor Sok Penhvuth, who kept watch on the area alongside dozens of his notorious district security guards, said the authorities had nothing to do with the clashes.

“The authorities tried to stop them from using violence … but they kept pushing each other and throwing rocks at each other until some people were injured,” he said.

City Hall spokesman Long Dimanche said the military police station was just the first of a number of new bases planned for the area.

“That land belongs to Phnom Penh authorities; it does not belong to a company or community. In the future, the authorities are going to build more buildings for police forces, not only the Daun Penh district military police station,” he said.

A district official who asked not to be named said Khun and others will be invited to meet with authorities today to discuss the ongoing dispute.

RECOMMENDED STORIES

  • 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