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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Central Market vendors threaten second protest at Hun Sen's house

Central Market vendors threaten second protest at Hun Sen's house

As plans for the renovation of the market press ahead, vendors say they

will resist attempts to force them to move to smaller stalls

VENDORS at Central Market have warned they will stage a second protest at Prime Minister Hun Sen's house if their concerns over renovations that will affect the location and sizes of their stalls remain unresolved.

Nearly 30 vendors demonstrated in August at Hun Sen's home at Takhmau in Kandal province. They submitted a petition from 400 vendors demanding the government intervene to preserve the size and location of their stalls.

Market vendor Bun Na said three other vendors were invited to address a Cabinet meeting about their complaints.

"Officials said they would give us their response in three days," she told the Post Tuesday.

"We will protest again if we do not get a solution," she said.

However, Bun Na said that since the August protests, city and market officials have resolved disputes by vendors located in the wings of the market.

"Many vendors at the edges of the market will actually get larger stalls," she said, adding that not all vendors had accepted a settlement.

Renovations at the market, principally to repair the roof, are being carried out with support from the French government and Kosan Engineering, market chief Sok Kimheng said. "On November 15, the market will build temporary stalls outside on the north and south ends," he said.

"When vendors move to the temporary stalls, we will start repairing stalls beginning December 15."

The market currently has 2,849 vendor stalls, but the renovations will likely increase the number, he said.

Sok Kimheng said many vendors have withdrawn from protests after accepting assurances from city officials. He disputed claims that 30 vendors demonstrated in front of Hun Sen's house, saying that only 10 had attended.

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