Lake dispute: Opposition lashes out at government

Meas Sokchea, Phnom Penh Post, Aug 16 2011

Lake dispute
The opposition Sam Rainsy Party said it was of “grave concern” that the World Bank had decided to suspend all new funding to Cambodia because of the handling of the Boeung Kak land dispute, in a statement released yesterday.

It said the government’s failure to heed the bank’s warnings in March that a resolution must be found for some 4,000 families who were evicted or face eviction from their homes to make way for a development spearheaded by ruling party senator Lao Meng Khin was a “catastrophe”.

Last week, the World Bank announced that it had halted new country loans to the Kingdom, until a suitable resolution was found in the Boeung Kak lake dispute.

“The possible loss of funding for upcoming projects will prove detrimental to the development of the country, to the relief of poverty and to the dignity of our people,’ the statement said.

Council of Ministers spokesman Phay Siphan said yesterday that the SRP did not understand the issue, adding that the World Bank did not the right to put pressure through the use of loans on Cambodia.

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