Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sesan locals protest over supporters’ detention

Sesan locals protest over supporters’ detention

Villagers threaten to burn a military police car in protest to release the detained villagers yesterday in Stung Treng province. Photo supplied
Villagers threaten to burn a military police car to protest the detention of villagers yesterday in Stung Treng province. Photo supplied

Sesan locals protest over supporters’ detention

The temporary detention and questioning of 24 people travelling to the reservoir area of the Lower Sesan II dam prompted a three-hour confrontation between Military Police and provincial police officials and more than 100 villagers in Stung Treng’s Kbal Romea village yesterday.

More than 200 people from ethnic minority networks across Cambodia took four vans and two cars to Kbal Romea and Srekor villages to demonstrate solidarity with local villagers – who face flooding after one of the dam’s gates was shut for testing – by taking part in traditional prayers and helping to build floating homes.

However, Sesan district authorities stopped one van carrying 24 travellers and brought them to the provincial police station for questioning, according to villagers. Kbal Romea community representative Dam Samnang’s motorbike was also confiscated.

Incensed, more than 100 people – mostly Kbal Romea residents – protested along National Road 78. The travellers were then ordered to return home.

Environmental activists from Mother Nature posted an hour-long video clip of the protest to their Facebook account showing a group of protesters shouting at Military Police.

“Police and soldiers are assigned to protect the territory and they are not assigned to point guns at the people like this,” one protester said, before the group demanded the immediate release of the 24. The protesters then threatened to set a Military Police vehicle on fire if their demands weren’t met.

Provincial Hall spokesman Men Kong insisted the travellers were stopped for their own protection. “After questioning, we let them go home,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Former opposition leader tells soldiers, Cambodians to unite to fight CPP

    Former Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) President Sam Rainsy has called for a popular uprising after the July 29 national elections to force a change of government. He called on the armed forces and people to stand united to fight the ruling Cambodian People’s Party-led

  • Prince injured, wife dies after accident

    THE wife of former First Prime Minister Prince Norodom Ranariddh, Ouk Phalla, 39, died while the prince was “severely” injured following a road accident in Preah Sihanouk province’s Prey Nub district on Sunday morning, officials said. Rananriddh, who is also the president of the Funcinpec

  • Bun Heang mocks US, threatens its citizens in scathing open letter

    After being hit with sanctions from the US Department of Treasury, Cambodian General Hing Bun Heang said he would retaliate against any US national who does not respect his country’s sovereignty, has ambitions to invade Cambodia or incites “traitors” in the Kingdom to do

  • Police warn boycott FB group involved in the “Clean Fingers Campaign”

    Police said on Tuesday that they will pick up members of a Facebook group involved in the “Clean Fingers Campaign” that promotes a boycott of next month’s national elections. However, police merely planned to “educate” the group for now, but warned that if the