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More than 200 protest over land woes in Preah Sihanouk

Pech Sotheary / Khmer Times Share:
The protesters
The protesters line a street in Preah Sihanouk province. Supplied

More than 200 villagers from Stung Hav and Prey Nop districts yesterday held a protest in front of Preah Sihanouk Provincial Hall over land disputes and a delay in the issuing of titles for state land which the government had agreed to transfer to some of them.

The protesters came from six communities and represented 400 families from the communities of Ou Damrey, Ou Tracheak Chit, Ou Khsach, Prek Treng, Bat Kteh and Andong Thmor.

You Veasna, who claimed to represent all the villagers, said some of them had land disputes with a private company and others with a broker.

He added that some other villagers were upset that they have not yet received land titles which the government had agreed to transfer to them.

“This is why we have gathered in front of the Provincial Hall to ask the administration to speed up the resolution of the land disputes and also provide titles for the land that the government said it would carve out for distribution,” Mr Veasna said.

Another protester Morn Sina, from the Ou Damrey community, said that in 2010 a broker grabbed communal land which was set aside to build a pagoda and the issue was not resolved although they had complained to the District Hall, Provincial Hall and relevant ministries.

“The provincial administration should help to intervene for us as soon as possible, so that we can use the land to build our pagoda,” he said.

Kheang Phearum, Provincial Hall spokesman, yesterday noted that the land disputes are either being resolved by the court or handled by a national-level working group which is also responsible for processing the distribution of the state land.

“The provincial administration cannot interfere in the cases which are in court, but will monitor the progress of the working team and try to push for a speedy resolution,” he said.

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