Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sugar firm, villagers in Preah Vihear face off again



Sugar firm, villagers in Preah Vihear face off again

Sugar firm, villagers in Preah Vihear face off again

Another in a series of standoffs between Preah Vihear villagers and sugar company Rui Feng yesterday saw 40 residents from three different districts camp out at Tbeng Meanchey district’s Brame commune in a bid to stop the company from clearing land.

The fresh impasse comes days after other groups of villagers unsuccessfully attempted to stop Rui Feng at different locations in Tbeng Meanchey and Chey Sen districts, with the firm ultimately clearing the land and dispersing villagers.

Tep Tim, one of the villagers at Brame, said residents of Cheb, Rovieng and Chey Sen districts had come to Tbeng Meanchey to support their attempts to thwart the company’s actions.

“The company continues to clear our farming land, so we hope to gather some 100 villagers to protest and stop the clearing,” she said.

As of Sunday evening, about 40 villagers had camped in the commune, with Tim saying that the company had already cleared 7 hectares of land on Saturday and begun planting sugarcane.

The dispute almost erupted into violence on January 6 when three men, presumably employees of the company, charged towards the 100 ethnic Kuoy villagers in Chey Sen with large wooden clubs.

Authorities had to intervene to prevent an escalation.

Ung Vuthy, Tbeng Meanchey district governor, said he had received a complaint from the villagers last week about the clearing, but denied the company had bulldozed villagers’ farmland.

“The company clears only the forest, not farming land. The work does not affect the land of villagers,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Phnom Penh placed in two-week lockdown

    The government has decided to place Phnom Penh in lockdown for two weeks, effective April 14 midnight through April 28, as Cambodia continues to grapple with the ongoing community outbreak of Covid-19, which has seen no sign of subsiding. According to a directive signed by Prime Minister

  • Cambodia on the verge of national tragedy, WHO warns

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia warned that the country had reached another critical point amid a sudden, huge surge in community transmission cases and deaths. “We stand on the brink of a national tragedy because of Covid-19. Despite our best efforts, we are

  • Hun Sen: Stay where you are, or else

    Prime Minister Hun Sen warned that the two-week lockdown of Phnom Penh and adjacent Kandal provincial town Takmao could be extended if people are not cooperative by staying home. “Now let me make this clear: stay in your home, village, and district and remain where

  • Businesses in capital told to get travel permit amid lockdown through One Window Service

    The Phnom Penh Municipal Administration has issued guidelines on how to get travel permission for priority groups during the lockdown of Phnom Penh, directing private institutions to apply through the municipality's One Window Service and limit their staff to a mere two per cent. In

  • Ministry names types of business permitted amid lockdown

    The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training singled out 11 types of business that are permitted to operate during the lockdown of Phnom Penh and Takmao town, which run through April 28. Those include (1) food-processing enterprises and slaughterhouses; (2) providers of public services such as firefighting, utility and

  • Culture ministry: Take Tuol Sleng photos down, or else

    The Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts has told Irish photographer Matt Loughrey to take down the photos of Khmer Rouge victims at Tuol Sleng Genocidal Museum which he allegedly colourised and altered to show them smiling. The ministry said Loughrey's work is unacceptable, affecting