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Hundreds protest: Land grab feared after posts appear

Five hundred villagers in Preah Vihear province protested yesterday outside the office of FP Malaysia Plantation Company, which they say is attempting to take their land.

Rith Sothon, a village representative in Preah Vihear’s Kulen district, said the villagers filed a complaint after the company placed posts on the villagers’ land.

“This is our ancient land. We have lived and planted here for many years. Recently, the company put up posts to divide our land by nearly 400 hectares,” he said.

FP Malaysia could not be reached yesterday.

Another villager, Khoun Sarith, said the company’s actions were “unacceptable”.

“This is not empty land. The land has villagers living and planting on it. They did not discuss compensation,” he said.

Lor Chan, provincial coordinator for rights group Adhoc, called on authorities to prove the firm has a concession to develop the land. “The authorities must investigate [this firm],” he said.

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