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Army Pushing Pagoda to Move: Monk

The armed forces is threatening to demolish a pagoda in Kampot province, if the leaders don’t move it first, a chief monk said Friday.

Division 11 soldiers have said the pagoda, which is home to seven monks and nine nuns, was built illegally in 2007, said Venerable In Sok, head monk at the pagoda.

Soldiers are not allowing villagers to hold ceremonies or pray at the pagoda and have threatened to destroy it if it is not moved, he said.

The pagoda is near a military headquarters and must be moved, said Phy Sokhen, secretary of the intervention forces of Division 11.

Not Norn, the district chief of the local Ministry of Religion office, said the pagoda had a legal permit to from the ministry to be built on the site.

The military was wrong in this matter, he said.

Kampot Governor Thach Khorn said he would conduct an investiation.