Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Police block villagers amid protest to seek land dispute solution



Police block villagers amid protest to seek land dispute solution

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
More than 800 villagers from Kratie province rally in Phnom Penh to seek land dispute solutions. Heng Chivoan

Police block villagers amid protest to seek land dispute solution

A woman fainted on Wednesday following a confrontation with police while she and 800 other protesters were marching to Prime Minister Hun Sen’s residence in the capital to deliver a petition.

The protesters were among 1,642 families who have been locked in a long-running land dispute with a Vietnamese-owned rubber plantation in Kratie province’s Snuol district.

The 800 protesters were marching from Samakki Raingsey pagoda in Phnom Penh’s Meanchey district to Hun Sen’s residence in the vicinity of the Independence Monument when they encountered police near the Vietnamese embassy.

Police said they stopped the protesters because they were “causing social disorder”.

Touch Dol, a representative of the 1,642 families in Snuol district’s Pi Tnou communes, said the villagers had no choice but to seek Hun Sen’s intervention in the land dispute. He said the villagers would not return home until they had a solution.

Dol said the villagers are worried about being evicted from their land after Memot Rubber Plantation Co Ltd received an economic land concession from the government.

The villagers have requested 2.5ha for each family and a clear boundary of the disputed land.

After the protest, Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction Minister Chea Sophara met with 35 representatives of the protesters and promised a solution for them.

“The protesters confirmed they had indeed cleared the land that had been given as a concession to Memot Rubber Plantation Co Ltd because they need land to cultivate."

“They agreed to return home and continue to work with the Kratie provincial authority to quickly identify people who owned the land. They also agreed to accept the land size and location provided to them by the authority,” the ministry said in a statement following the meeting.

It said villagers who do not actually own land in the area would need to submit a petition through the relevant authorities for an economic land concession.

Rights group Adhoc spokesperson Soeung Sen Karona said villagers have the right to protest. He urged the authorities to seek a speedy solution for them.

“Although there’s no solution yet, the minister would use his high position to find a solution for them. I am very hopeful,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Phnom Penh unveils rules for post-lockdown transition

    The Phnom Penh Municipal Administration issued a set of detailed guidelines for the seven days to May 12 after the capital emerges from lockdown at the onset of May 6. In the 14-page document signed by municipal governor Khuong Sreng released on the evening of May 5, the

  • SBI LY HOUR Bank Launches Cross Border Money Transfer Service between Cambodia and Vietnam on RippleNet, utilizing DLT

    SBI LY HOUR Bank Plc and Hanoi-based Tien Phong Commercial Joint Stock Bank (TPBank) on Friday launched the first Cambodia-Vietnam money transfer service in real currency via RippleNet, provided by SBI Ripple Asia Co Ltd to provide safe, fast and convenient services. SBI LY HOUR

  • Cambodia ready to exit LDC status

    Cambodia is well-prepared to minimise economic risks when it graduates from its Least Developed Countries status, according to a senior official at the Ministry of Commerce on May 7. Four LDCs – Cambodia, Laos, Bangladesh and Nepal – met at a virtual workshop last week to explore potential

  • Nine US franchises eye Cambodia debut

    Nine famous US franchising companies are looking for business opportunities and expansion into Cambodia to build a footstep for a strong foundation in Southeast Asia. The US embassy in Phnom Penh, in partnership with the US Foreign Commercial Service and with support from the American

  • Nearly 2,000 detained for Phnom Penh curfew breach

    Nearly 2,000 people were detained in the capital for violating the curfew imposed by the government and Phnom Penh Municipal Administration. Municipal police spokesman San Sokseyha told The Post on May 16 that people were detained in two phases. In phase one, the government locked down Phnom

  • Jab drive announced for two more Phnom Penh districts

    The Phnom Penh Municipal Administration on May 15 announced a first-dose novel-coronavirus vaccination campaign for Boeung Keng Kang and Sen Sok districts from May 18-31, and a follow-up second-shot drive from June 1-15. Twenty vaccination sites have been set up in a combined 13 communes across both