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Worried villagers seek info on rail project

Villagers protest outside City Hall yesterday in Phnom Penh demanding clarity on the development plans for the longtime out of order railway line.
Villagers protest outside City Hall yesterday in Phnom Penh demanding clarity on the development plans for the longtime out of order railway line. Hong Menea

Worried villagers seek info on rail project

About 100 villagers living along the out-of-order railway lines in northern Phnom Penh petitioned City Hall yesterday to ask for clarity about the development plans for the line, which is set to be widened and used as a thoroughfare.

The line extends from Phnom Penh’s Boeung Kak area north to Kilometer 6 in Russey Keo district.

Residents along the line fear eviction or confiscation of parts of their land. Community representative Ny Sandos said the local administration needed to show the plans for the project, land titles for their existing land and to offer them compensation for any lost land.

“We are affected and worry about the development. They are scared to leave their homes to go earn a living,” Sandos said.

While former City Governor Pa Socheatvong had made assurances the development would not affect the residents, Keo Bopha, another representative, said they wanted a written agreement or they would protest.

City Hall spokesman Met Measpheakdey said the city had no plan in place and that any construction activity would proceed only after consultation with the residents.

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