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Hundreds of hectares cleared in Mondulkiri: gov

Hundreds of hectares cleared in Mondulkiri: gov

Mondulkiri’s provincial governor yesterday said officials are investigating allegations of the clearing of 200 to 300 hectares of protected forestland in Keo Seima district.

Villagers and district officials informed provincial authorities of the allegations of people clearing the forestland and asked for intervention, said Mondulkiri Provincial Governor Svay Sam Eang.

The land in question is located in Sre Chhouk commune and is under the control of the Ministry of Environment.

A military officer and a police officer were among those under investigation, Sam Eang noted. But so far, there was no evidence proving their involvement.

Sam Eang said officials believe it was migrants who were clearing the land, then selling it to other newcomers to the area, in cooperation with local villagers.

“We already identified three to four dealers,” he said. “I think we will bring those people to face the law; they did illegal logging and depleted natural resources.”

It will take a few more days for the investigation to be completed, he added.

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