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Despite Elections, Land Issues Continue

More than 1,000 people have recently come to the residence of Prime Minister Hun Sen, seeking redress for land issues that a rights investigator said are increasing even as the general election draws near.

Higher prices for land have led to the increase, said Licadho investigator Am Sam Arth, and not even the upcoming election has had an impact.

That has been frustrating for many villagers, but also for the groups who worked to make the 2004 land law.

Mony Soeung, a villager from Battambang province’s Bavil district, said local authorities conspired to take 165 hectares of land from 38 families three months ago. He came as part of the 1,000 families to ask Hun Sen for help.

Rithy Meas, a villager who was part of a group of 1,000 families that lost land in Kampot province, said he won’t vote for the ruling Cambodian People’s Party if the problem isn’t solved.