About 20 families in Koh Kong province are accusing provincial authorities and military police of blocking them from farming on land that is part of a dispute with a Chinese development firm stretching back almost five years.
The rice farms are in Botum Sakor district, which is part of a large area of land that is destined to be tranformed into a mega-resort by Chinese company Tianjin Union Development Group.
The villagers claim they have farmed their since 1979 and were never compensated as other villagers were to make room for the development.
“They would not allow us to do farming, and we don’t get compensation yet because we are accused of living at another commune and doing farming on another commune, so we are not compensated,” said Lay Keat, 52, who claims one of the rice fields.
Provincial governor Bun Leut said it was well-known that the company had ownership of that land. “We already reached the solution because the villagers had been informed about this and they knew,” he said.
To contact the reporter on this story: Chhay Channyda at firstname.lastname@example.org