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Fisherman Gather Outside Gov't Building to Protest Loss of Waters

More than 80 representatives of a fishing village in Kampong Thom province gathered outside the National Assembly in Phnom Penh Thursday to protest the alleged sale of their fishing lots to other interests.

The fishermen said a Cambodian People's Party commune chief in Stung district, Tri Horn, sold their fishing concession.

"In this village, it is not only I who tremendously suffered from the sale of the fishing lot, but also hundred of families," said Horn Say, a Prakeab village fisherman. "Please [Prime Minister] Hun Sen, please help your people. We're not allowed to fish, and if we do, they just take our nets. Now our 11 fishing nets have been confiscated. We cannot even feed our cattle with the water in the lot. We cannot even use the water to irrigate our rice paddy."

The accused commune chief, Tri Horn, told VOA Khmer the villagers had voted to exchange fishing lots for the construction of a road, and he had followed their wishes.