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Boeung Kak land talks fail

Boeung Kak land talks fail

Following negotiations yesterday with Phnom Penh Governor Pa Socheatvong, representatives of 12 Boeung Kak community families complained that City Hall was not offering them nearly enough land to replace what had previously been taken from them.

The negotiations took place a day after Hong Sokkheng, rumoured to be the 51-year-old sister of a high-ranking Cambodian People’s Party member, said she would accept an offer of far less land than that which was taken from her in 2010.

However, after other Boeung Kak families yesterday complained about being offered insufficient land, Sokkheng said she would support those families in solidarity.

“We are the real victims, and we should have been offered a proper solution,” said Ly Nary, a member of one of the 12 families who negotiated with the municipality yesterday. “Phnom Penh municipal authorities should not use this solution policy, which seems to pressure and coerce us into taking a deal.”

Chinese-owned company Shukaku Inc destroyed about 3,600 square metres of her land by flooding it and inundating it with sand in 2010, Nary said.

During yesterday’s meeting, City Hall offered to give the 12 families land plots that amounted to about 30 per cent of the land each had lost.

Sen Touch, 45, who was also involved in negotiations, said that Shukaku’s land grabbing in order to build modern apartments in the area represented “social injustice”.

“I am very disappointed that Pa Socheatvong said that he has no land to offer us, when thousands of square metres of our land were grabbed by the company without any solution,” Touch said.

“Buildings are constructed on our land, but where is the justice for us?”

Sokkheng yesterday said that although she had previously agreed to accept a piece of land 8,580 square metres less than what she previously owned, she will now demand a better deal.

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