Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Villagers summonsed in illegal logging case

Villagers summonsed in illegal logging case

Villagers summonsed in illegal logging case

Some 300 villagers from the Andong Trabaek community in Svay Rieng province’s Romeas Hek district will accompany two representatives who have been summonsed to the provincial court Tuesday to clarify allegations of illegal logging that villagers say were fabricated by Forestry Administration officials in order to steal farmland.

Representative Soun Seyha said 86 families had been wrapped up in a dispute over 71 hectares with forestry officials since 2008, and had filed multiple complaints to no avail. The current case began when people returned to the disputed land to grow cassava and rice – without disturbing the acacia trees – Seyha said, maintaining the Forestry Administration had “used the court system to threaten us”.

The other summonsed representative, Soun Hongly, said villagers had cultivated the land since 1980 but were chased off in 2008 by forestry officials and threatened with warning shots when they tried to return.

Theng Saveoung, the secretariat co-ordinator of the Coalition of Cambodian Farmer Community, said the forestry officials were seeking to sell the land for their own gain.

Neither Net Phok, the official who filed the complaint, nor Soun Somnang, the provincial investigating judge who issued the summons, could be reached for comment.

To contact the reporter on this story: May Titthara at [email protected]


  • 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