© John Vink / Magnum Photos

View Stories By » Latest | Title | Timeline | Multimedia
Cambodia Quest For Land3
Eviction of the Bassac slum. See also ‘Cambodia Quest For Land2’ and ‘Cambodia the Quest For Land’. After a fire burned down nearly 1000 shacks along the Bassac river in november 2001, the inhabitants were relocated outside of Phnom Penh, too far away from their livinghood. 60% came back and settled nearly on the same location, joined over the last years by many more families. The land belongs to the municipality and it was sold to Su Srun company who plans to invest heavily. As a compensation, the company bought land in Dangkao district, 27 km from the Bassac to relocate the inhabitants. 1700 plots of 5x12m land are available for the evicted. Every rightfull owner of a house on the Bassac is entitled to a plot of land. Unfortunately some own 5 houses in the Bassac which they rent out. The owner thus gets 5 plots of land in Dangkao, but the people who are renting become homeless. Over 400 renting families are then parked together at the entrance of the fenced land they were evicted from, soon joined by several hundreds of other families claiming they were living in the squat and hoping to get a plot of land as well. After several weeks sheltering from the rain under rudimentary protection and living in unworthy conditions without drinking water or electricity, the renters and the cheaters are still waiting the authorities to decide wether or not they would get a plot of land. Finally, on June 7th, all the people remaining on Su Srun’s land were forcefully removed and relocated to the outskirts of the city.
Page: 123