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DPM Tea Banh Urges Siem Reap Provincial Authorities to Manage Natural Resources and Resolve Land Issues Quickly

SIEM REAP: The Minister of National Defense, Deputy Prime Minister Tea Banh, has urged the Siem Reap provincial authorities to manage the natural resources and forest conservation areas, collectively with other relevant ministries, institutions and local authorities, in order to resolve ongoing land encroachment issues more quickly. He made these remarks during the closing ceremony of the meeting to summarize the work results of 2021 and work direction for 2022 of the Siem Reap Provincial Administration on Tuesday morning.

Deputy Prime Minister Tea Banh has stated that in order to ensure the effectiveness of the work to manage natural resources and forest conservation areas, the provincial administration, municipal administration, district administration and commune administration must together ensure the proper implementation of the principles and measures set by the relevant ministries and institutions.

He added that all relevant parties must cooperate to expedite the settlement process for those who are requesting ownership of protected land they have lived on for many years, including the careful management of data on the identities of people and the areas of protected land they live on in each jurisdiction, in order to clearly and transparently request the Royal Government to officially grant ownership of this land.

He stated that as the Chairman of the Provincial State Land Management Commission, he urges the provincial administration to cooperate with other ministries and institutions in defining border posts and registering land to prevent illegal encroachment on state-owned land areas and forests in protected areas. He stressed that the state must expedite the settlement of land disputes as soon as possible to avoid them spreading and becoming more complicated and difficult to resolve. He advised that in resolving land disputes and local protests, efforts must be made to avoid all forms of violence, and the monitoring and control of encroachment on people’s land in protected areas and forests must be increased to prevent any further illegal intrusions.

He said that in any found cases of land encroachment on protected areas or forests, strict administrative and legal measures must be implemented.

Deputy Prime Minister Tea Banh also recommended to village and commune authorities not to sign documents of sale, transfer or ownership, any documents of illegal land tenure in protected areas, and to continue to educate, guide and disseminate information on forest law, fisheries law and laws on protected areas to local authorities, citizens and stakeholders, so that they can more actively participate in the protection of forests and natural resources. He stated that the forest in the Phnom Kulen area, in particular, must be protected because it is an important source of water supply for Siem Reap province.

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