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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Imprisoned activist freed

Imprisoned activist freed

Ly Seav Minh was released from prison yesterday
Ly Seav Minh was released from prison yesterday. Pha Lina

Imprisoned activist freed

A land activist embroiled in a long-running dispute with a politically connected company was released from Prey Sar prison yesterday, two days after a Supreme Court order granted her bail.

Ly Seav Minh remained defiant after leaving custody for the first time in almost five months, saying she would continue to live on her land while fighting the Khun Sear Import Export Company at court.

“It is right that I have been released because I am innocent, but it’s unjust that our family did nothing wrong and still have been charged at court,” Seav Minh said.

The 23-year-old and her family have been accused of “using violence” against a legal property owner by Khun Sear, which acquired the family’s Boeung Kak 2 commune land in 2013. But the family rejects the allegations and instead accuses the company of organising a campaign of intimidation against them.

In March, the family accepted a compensation offer from Khun Sear of $160,000 to secure Seav Minh’s release. But her brother, Ly Bun Heang, previously told the Post the deal has since soured.

Although granted bail on April 22, prison officials refused to let Seav Minh leave, citing a lack of documentation.

Yesterday Seav Minh alleged a different reason.

“They didn’t want to release me on Thursday because there were journalists and land activists from Boeung Kak there to welcome me at prison, so they made an excuse not to release me and demanded documents,” she said.

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