Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Farmers hounded wherever they go

Farmers hounded wherever they go

Farmers hounded wherever they go

subde.jpg
subde.jpg

A mother and her baby among the 300 landless farmers outside the National Assembly

ABOUT 300 poor farmers from the northwest have had a hard time finding a place to

be.

First they were thrown off their land in Kbal Spean village outside Poipet. Then

Phnom Penh police kicked them out of the park in front of the National Assembly where

they were protesting. Now municipal authorities are threatening to remove them from

their new camp outside Wat Botum, where an Interior Ministry official initially gave

them permission to settle.

All this because wealthy people wanted their land. In the land grab 800 households

were bulldozed away. No compensation was paid. And the only replacement land offered

was in the middle of a field strewn with land-mines.

Other land-grab victims in Poipet advised the farmers to go to the National Assembly

and demonstrate. None of them knew that the municipality banned campsite protesters

from the spot in July, so they were distressed on August 25 when police showed up

just before midnight and threatened to use water cannons against them if they didn't

move away. The police also confiscated tarpaulins, sacks of rice and cans of dried

fish.

The following night around 11 pm police forcefully moved them to the city's official

protest location near the Naga Casino. But the area is wet and flooded these days,

so the farmers moved to the spot in front of Wat Botum, across the park from the

National Assembly.

Every morning they go to sit in front of the Assembly. At 5 pm they move back to

their makeshift camp outside the temple.

However, police now seem determined to confine them to the flooded area near the

casino. Every day police show up at the camp and tell the farmers to move.

But to where?, the villagers ask. A field with land mines outside Poipet?

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Education’ a priority traffic-law penalty

    A top National Police official on June 21 neither rejected nor confirmed the authenticity of a leaked audio message, which has gone viral on social media, on a waiver of fines for a number of road traffic-related offences. General Him Yan, deputy National Police chief in

  • Pursat Ford assembly plant opens

    The Kingdom’s first Ford assembly plant was inaugurated on June 16 in Pursat province amid rising demand for brand-new vehicles among Cambodians. The facility is seen as a game changer for the domestic automobile industry, which could bring a wave of investors seeking to cash

  • Volunteer scheme to foster ‘virtuous’ humanitarian spirit

    A senior education official said volunteer work contributes to solidarity and promotes a virtuous humanitarian spirit among the youth and communities. Serei Chumneas, undersecretary of state at the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, made the comment during the opening of a training programme called “

  • Siem Reap’s $18M zoo said to educate public, help wildlife

    Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium Co Ltd has invested $18 million in a zoo in Siem Reap province, which will be opened in October to educate and promote animal conservation as well as attract national and international tourists. Currently, the Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium is building the

  • $50B infrastructure plan en route

    The government’s upcoming $50 billion,10-year infrastructure master plan will provide tremendous investment opportunities for domestic and foreign entities, transport experts and economists say. Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol revealed the plan to Japanese ambassador to Cambodia Masahiro Mikami on June 15. At

  • Chinese firms unveil preliminary results on metro, monorail for capital

    Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol and representatives from China Road and Bridge Corp (CRBC) and its parent company, the state-owned China Communications Construction Co Ltd (CCCC), met on June 24 for talks on results of the firms’ preliminary study on a potential metro