Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Veterans chief calls for end to grabbing of land

Veterans chief calls for end to grabbing of land

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Kun Kim sits on a bed as he calls for people to stop grabbing social land concessions in Siem Reap. Photo supplied

Veterans chief calls for end to grabbing of land

Senior Minister Kun Kim, who is secretary-general of the Cambodia Veteran Association, on Wednesday called for people not to grab land from a social land concession meant for Cambodian veterans in Siem Reap province, while a civil society group said people had been living there since 1980.

Kim’s plea came on a visit to veterans, where he inspected the land in Khun Ream commune’s Kam Prom village in Banteay Srei district.

The 1,369ha plot had been reserved for veterans with a poor standard of living, Kim said, but people had grabbed some 984ha, leaving only 385ha intact.

“As a veteran, [I] appeal to the brothers and sisters who have grabbed the land illegally to stop. If you really lack land, please apply to the relevant authorities so they can assess your real standard of living in the same way they do for veterans,” he said.

Siem Reap deputy administrative director Sok Thol said on Thursday that the land had been set aside by the government as a social land concession in 2012.

“For a long time, people have cleared and grabbed land from the social land concession for farming,” he said.

Suos Narin, the provincial coordinator for rights group Adhoc, said the government had revoked some land despite villagers having held it for some time.

“The land dispute has been going on for a long time, and the land selected for the social concession has changed a few times already and has not been specifically demarcated yet."

“When people protest, they move the social land concession to another location. Before, it was in Varin district,” Narin said.

He asked that before selecting an area for a social land concession, the relevant authorities should first carefully study whether the land is already owned. He said doing this would avoid disputes.

“As a civil society worker, I support finding solutions to land disputes through peaceful means. I have seen documents showing that people have had ownership of the land since before 2012,” he said.

Narin said most of the people involved in the Varin district dispute have held land since 1980, while some obtained ownership documents from village and commune authorities in 2000.

“What I have noticed is that villagers are prevented from doing anything with the land, but land traders, who have many hectares of land, manage to do it", he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • PM orders immediate action against ‘sexy’ live streamers

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Monday ordered immediate action against women who live stream their sales pitches on Facebook wearing revealing clothing. The prime minister said the practice erodes traditional Cambodian values and disgraces women. Hun Sen gave the order to officials attending the Cambodian

  • Trump tweets praise for Kingdom docking ship

    Cambodia continues to earn praise for its humanitarian act of allowing the MS Westerdam cruise ship with more than 2,200 passengers and crew on board to dock at the Preah Sihanouk port. The praise this time comes from none other than US President Donald Trump. “Thank

  • Tourist area greenlit in Sihanoukville

    The National Committee for Coastal Management and Development will coordinate with relevant ministries over the establishment of a billion-dollar tourist area named Neak Reach in Preah Sihanouk province after it was proposed by the Ministry of Tourism. The Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and

  • Organic vegetable retailer unveils QR code scheme for origin source

    Organic vegetable retailer Natural Agriculture Village has introduced QR codes on its product packaging, which will allow consumers to see where their produce comes from. Natural Agriculture Village president Bun Sieng, who is also a member of local distributor Green Gold, told The Post on

  • Hun Sen defends decision to dock Westerdam cruise ship

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Thursday hit back at critics who say he allowed the Westerdam cruise ship to dock in Sihanoukville for political reasons. Speaking at an annual gathering of the Ministry of Interior, Hun Sen said he acted to avert a humanitarian catastrophe

  • Cool heads will defeat Covid-19

    Since Covid-19 was first reported as a world health issue, cruise ships have been the worst to suffer after airlines. The experiences of those who were initially trapped on the Covid-19-stricken Diamond Princess are unimaginable. The cruise ship was rejected from docking at one