Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Villagers summonsed in illegal logging case

Villagers summonsed in illegal logging case

Villagers summonsed in illegal logging case

Some 300 villagers from the Andong Trabaek community in Svay Rieng province’s Romeas Hek district will accompany two representatives who have been summonsed to the provincial court Tuesday to clarify allegations of illegal logging that villagers say were fabricated by Forestry Administration officials in order to steal farmland.

Representative Soun Seyha said 86 families had been wrapped up in a dispute over 71 hectares with forestry officials since 2008, and had filed multiple complaints to no avail. The current case began when people returned to the disputed land to grow cassava and rice – without disturbing the acacia trees – Seyha said, maintaining the Forestry Administration had “used the court system to threaten us”.

The other summonsed representative, Soun Hongly, said villagers had cultivated the land since 1980 but were chased off in 2008 by forestry officials and threatened with warning shots when they tried to return.

Theng Saveoung, the secretariat co-ordinator of the Coalition of Cambodian Farmer Community, said the forestry officials were seeking to sell the land for their own gain.

Neither Net Phok, the official who filed the complaint, nor Soun Somnang, the provincial investigating judge who issued the summons, could be reached for comment.

To contact the reporter on this story: May Titthara at [email protected]


  • 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