Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - More than 1,700 ethnic Vietnamese families’ documents taken

More than 1,700 ethnic Vietnamese families’ documents taken

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
An official checks the documents of an ethnically Vietnamese villager last month in Kampong Chhnang province. Heng Chivoan

More than 1,700 ethnic Vietnamese families’ documents taken

The process of revoking documents from ethnic Vietnamese people, many of whom have been living in Cambodia for generations, is halfway complete in Kampong Chhnang province, according to the provincial director of immigration.

In a move described as a human rights violation by observers, Ministry of Interior officials have spent eight days examining and revoking documents from 1,733 Vietnamese families in the province.

Some interviewed by The Post last week have lived in Cambodia for generations, only leaving the country temporarily in the 1970s to escape the purges of the ethnic Vietnamese under the Khmer Rouge.

Provincial Immigration Chief Pan Laikheang said he did not know when the inspection and seizure process would be complete.

In total, 2,393 families are being targeted in Kampong Chhnang, affecting over 10,000 people.

The Ministry of Interior previously identified 70,000 people eligible for document revocation nationwide, with over 90 percent of those ethnic Vietnamese.

“After seizing the irregular documents, we will fill out documents to be sent to the [Ministry of Interior], which will declare and recognise them as legal immigrants,” he said.

Migrants can typically apply for citizenship after seven years of residency. Despite the fact many of the individuals in question were born and raised in Cambodia, the seven-year wait would begin now, according to Laikheang’s deputy Pal Soth.

“During that time, they need to pay taxes on immigrant status,” Soth added.

MOST VIEWED

  • Negotiations on EBA being held

    In an effort to defuse tensions, a senior government official said Cambodia is negotiating with the European Union (EU) on the Everything But Arms (EBA) trade deal, which allows the Kingdom to export goods to the 28-member bloc tariff-free. The EU notified Cambodia on October 5

  • Ministers to tackle sea pollutants

    Preah Sihanouk provincial authorities and members of local communities have collected 77 tonnes of water hyacinth at a Sihanoukville beach, Preah Sihanouk Provincial Hall spokesperson Or Saroeun said. He told The Post yesterday that the aquatic weeds had been floating along some of the province’s

  • Chinese police escort deported scam suspects

    Ninety-one Chinese nationals accused of extorting money from victims in a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) scam were deported from Phnom Penh International Airport on Monday under the escort of 182 Chinese police personnel. General Department of Immigration head of investigations Ouk Hay Seila told reporters

  • Sam Rainsy, government group set to clash at IPU Geneva meet?

    Opposition figure Sam Rainsy has been invited to speak at the General Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) in Geneva, according to a former Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) lawmaker. A government delegation is also set to attend the meeting, a National Assembly press release