Six village representatives in Kampong Speu province’s Thpong district who have been summoned over a land dispute with a company owned by Cambodian People’s Party Senator Ly Yong Phat have written a letter to the provincial court asking that they be given more time to hold discussions with local officials. On Friday, the court summoned all six to answer to allegations that they became violent with employees of the Phnom Penh Sugar Company, who last week arrived under military police escort to survey the land. The representatives have said they were camping out on the land so that it would not be appropriated by the company. “Today, we are together joining with the provincial police to send a letter to provincial court asking them to settle our problem in our district before taking the case to the court,” said Nov Chhon, one of the representatives. More than 200 families live on land in Omlaing commune that is also part of a 9,000-hectare concession to the company. Khut Sopheang, the prosecutor handling the case, declined to comment on the representatives’ letter on Sunday.
Land Dispute: Summoned villagers ask for time