Villagers 'seeking justice' in land dispute

national February 09, 2015 01:00

By The Nation

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LOCAL PEOPLE in Khok Yao and Bor Kaew communities in Chaiyaphum are preparing to petition for help from state authorities again today in the face of growing pressure for them to vacate homes on disputed land in Khon San forest.

The villagers have been seeking community land titles for a chunk of land allegedly seized by the Forestry Industry Organisation decades ago.
“We will ask for justice. We definitely won’t leave our hometown,” Den Khamlae, a Khok Yao resident, said on
Den spoke up after more armed police, military, forestry and administrative officials came to the Khok Yao Community last Friday and put up announcements that all residents must leave the area and dismantle any structure there within 15 days.
“This time, the number of officials was bigger than previous times,” Den said. 
He said the move had caused serious concern. Locals were worried that they would not have roofs over their head. His community hosts more than 20 homes. 
“This happens even though it was agreed at the meeting between the People’s Movement For a Just Society and |representatives from relevant agencies that officials will suspend or stop any activity that will affect the happy and normal life of people,” Den lamented.
He said the meeting took place at Government House on October 7 last year. 

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