Saturday, November 25, 2006

Khmer Krom people protest land confiscation by the Vietnamese authority

23 Nov 2006
By Kim Pov Sottan
Radio Free Asia

Translated from Khmer by Socheata

According to Monk Thach Binh, representative of Khmer Kampuchea-Krom Federation (KKF) in Phnom Penh, at least 30 Khmer Krom people (Cambodians living in current South Vietnam) living in Khleang province (Soc Trang province in Vietnamese) have protested against the Vietnamese authority on Thursday 23 Nov morning after their land was confiscated.

46-year-old Bun Ba, the leader of the demonstration, who lives in Tung Hung village, Andoung Teuk district, Khleang province, said over the phone from Kampuchea Krom that the protesters have gathered from several districts in Khleang province to demand from the Prek Russey (Can Tho) district office a resolution on this matter.

Bun Ba said: “Today, there are 31 of us … from Khleang province who came to protest about the problem of our rice field lands which were taken away from us. According to the Vietnamese law, we must be compensated. I live there, I know the Vietnamese law, I know we are right.”

After 1979, the Vietnamese authorities have confiscated ancestral lands belonging to Khmer Krom people to distribute [to Vietnamese people] in every areas [of Kampuchea Krom]. Bun Ba said that this is the fourth time that Khmer people living in Khleang province are protesting to demand for fair market value compensation for the land confiscated from them.

Monk Thach Binh, KKF planning director, said that Khmer Krom people have made legal claims as stated in the Vietnamese law, however, in every demonstration, the protesters are arrested, jailed and threatened.

Monk Thach Binh added that the demonstration will continue: “When we raise protest signs, they (the Vietnamese authority) promise that they will go to the villages and districts to resolve the issue for the Khmer Krom people. They only promise, but in fact they are lying, they never came to resolve the problems. When Khmer Krom people are pressuring the police authority, they said that people have the right to protest, to demand the formation of a commune office, in reality, it’s all on paper only.”

The Vietnamese embassy in Cambodia cannot be reached to provide a clarification on this issue. The group of demonstrators said that on 20 Dec, they are planning to hold another demonstration.

According to KKF, 68,600 square kilometers of the Kampuchea Krom territory fell into the hand of the Vietnamese authority on 4 June 1949, more than 50 years ago. KKF continuously receive claims about the pressure exerted on Khmer Krom people [by the Vietnamese authority].

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What do you know! AH HUN SEN land grabber from poor Cambodian people philosophy is cathing with the Vietcong master too! Now the fucken Vietcong is doing the same to the Khmer people in Southern Vietname!