Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Violent dispute is far from over

Violent dispute is far from over

Violent dispute is far from over

110711_3
A bloodied policeman and a villager receive treatment from a doctor after the violent land dispute last month in Kampong Speu province.

OFFICIALS are reportedly planning another attempt to enforce a Supreme Court-ordered eviction in Kampong Speu province, villagers said yesterday, following an effort last month that ended in violence.

Bun Sokhom, a 46-year-old resident of Stok Slar village in Oudong district’s Phnom Toch commune, said yesterday that authorities had warned villagers during a forum on Saturday that they would take any legal action necessary to seize a 65-hectare area that has been the centre of a dispute since 2004.

A 2009 Supreme Court verdict ruled that the land belonged to the Meng Keth Company, owned by Taiwanese businessman Kuo Sheng, but villagers who disagree with the outcome have continued to occupy and plant rice on the land.

Deputy provincial governor Satthya Vuth reportedly accused residents of an “illegal occupation”, and said that the villagers had “no rights” to the land as they had sold it to the company and lost their case at three different courts, Bun Sokhom said.

Satthya Vuth and Oudong district governor Poul Nov, who attended the forum sponsored by the United States-based National Democratic Institute with villagers, could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Yan Sokhom, a 40-year-old from Por village of Dom Nak Rieng commune, said yesterday that villagers were united in their determination to protect land they believed was rightfully theirs.

While Nut Romduol, a lawmaker for the opposition Sam Rainsy Party from Kampong Speu province, said yesterday that he had submitted a letter to National Assembly President Heng Samrin requesting further investigation into the dispute.

Last month, about 300 policemen attempted to carry out a Supreme Court-ordered eviction of villagers in the 65-hectare area, but encountered a force of roughly 250 armed residents from Damnak Raing and Phnom Touch communes.

A skirmish in Stock Slat village left at least 11 injured, including one villager who had been shot by police, and a police officer who was beaten unconscious by locals.

Another policeman was taken hostage by villagers who discussed whether to kill him.

Local authorities later filed a complaint against villagers for injuries to four policemen.

MOST VIEWED

  • 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

  • Guards protest dismissals, reject claims of sharing naked photos of child

    Some 20 former security guards at the US Embassy in Phnom Penh protested on Tuesday against their dismissal. They accused their employers of falsely claiming they had viewed and shared child pornography from their mobile phones as grounds for their termination. In total, 32 personnel were dismissed

  • 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

  • Funcinpec urges probe into deadly Preah Sihanouk accident

    THE Funcinpec party has urged the government, especially the Ministry of Interior, to investigate the traffic accident in Preah Sihanouk province which left Prince Norodom Ranariddh badly injured and his wife Ouk Phalla dead. Funcinpec Vice President You Hokry told reporters at Botum Votey pagoda,