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Kuoy file suit over ‘land grab’

Ethnic Kuoy villagers in Preah Vihear’s Tbeng Meanchey district have filed a lawsuit against Chinese companies operating there, demanding up to $600,000 in compensation for the alleged destruction of their ancestral lands.

Roeurng Khan, a representative of the 367 Brame commune families behind the suit, said they filed the lawsuit on Wednesday to the provincial court, alleging Lan Feng International and Roy Feng International have destroyed their farms, community forest, ancient temples and water resources.

“We filed lawsuits against them to pay us $200,000 per village for the clearing and destruction of the natural resources,” she said.

Lan Feng and Roy Feng are part of a group of five Chinese-owned companies, registered to the same address, which were granted economic land concessions in 2012 covering 220,000 hectares in the district, rights group Adhoc said.

Keo Nil, a representative of the companies, said he was unaware of the lawsuit.

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