In The News: Lake Family’s House Collapses into the Water, Filling Blamed

 

Police Block investigators as House Sinks into Lake at Boeung Kak.  (c) John Vink / Magnum

Police Block investigators as House Sinks into Lake at Boeung Kak. (c) John Vink / Magnum (from ka-set)

Family’s house Falls into Lake, Pumping Blamed, Legal Investigators blocked from interviewing the family.

 From CambogeSoir:

On Thursday 27 November, cops prevented Cambodian and foreign investigators from Licadho to meet with a family living on Boeung Kak Lake which is currently being filled in for a major real estate development project.”

In the evening of Wednesday to Thursday, Sun Ratanak’s home on stilt sunk into the lake water. Chea Nara (a Licadho investigator) said that he and his colleagues were prevented from meeting the family of the victims. “We can only get into the location if we ask the authorization from the Phnom Penh governor,” Chea Nara reported.

From Ka-Set:

(Selections of the article translated from French by saveboeungkak)

Original Article in French Here

“Touch Narot, Phnom Penh Police Commissioner says he is surprised that journalists are so concerned by what he considers a small issue.  ‘People (journalists) should not all rush to Boeung Kak over a little story like this, the collapse of a little house in this development zone.  The owner of this house should go negotiate compensation with the company…'”

The article also highlighted the use of police to block investigators, and Shukaku’s methods:

“‘There was no reason to send in armed officers of the Intervention Police.  Where is the harm in taking photographs of the damage?  Today we saw how an invisible company used the authorities to harrass people who were doing their job.  No Cambodian law forbids taking photos and filming!'”

“Rather than conducting a mass eviction that would produce strong reactions and resistance, the company prefers to wait until all the houses disappear one after another into the water…'”

-Ka-set, quoting Naly Pilorge,  Director of LICADHO

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