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Sambok Chab Residents Protest About Unfair Treatment

Forty eight families from Sambok Chab villages in Tonle Bassac who were being evicted and resettled in Dangkao commune protest in front of the Ministy of Justice appealing to Prime Minister Hun Sen to find a solution for them.

They are unhappy because they allege that the city authorities and the company (that bought their former site for development) provide shelters and money to Vietnamese residents. These residents were resettled in June. They say that authorities do not keep their promises.

One villagers' representative, Buth Bopha, says that these residents were being treated unfairly, and that they have lived in the old site since 1982.

Other people have lived there for almost 20 years, with family cards, home deeds, and Phnom Penh Ministry of Land Survey recognizes their titles. They allege that the authorities force them to vacate saying they will solve the problem later.

Another woman, Bun Sakheoun says with tears in her eyes that she is hurt by the authorities and company's neglect, and helped 30 Vietnamese families instead.

To find out about these allegations, VOA stringer goes to Dangkao commune and interviews a Vietnamese woman who told her that her family receives a lot of 5 by 12 meters, 20kg. of rice, a tent, a water barrel, and $600 from the authorities and the company.

Another Vietnamese man says the same thing. Phnom Penh Vice Governor Pa Socheatvong says that Phnom Penh city hall does not have a plan to provide these Vietnamese residents with anything, and that all residents get the same treatment.

Opposition Sam Rainsy party (SRP) legislator Keo Remy says that the Cambodians and the Vietnamese are not dealt with equally when legal cases are concerned. He appeals to the authorities to conduct investigations on this matter, saying present Cambodian societies do not get treated fairly. He says that he observes that the authorities seem to pay more attention to immigrants, especially the Vietnamese than their own citizens.