By Bennett Murray and Mao Monkolransey
Phnom Penh, Daun Penh, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, September 2, 2015
The garbage-strewn, riverside area that contains Chrang Chamres commune may be unsightly, but the local Cham community fears that a future away from their niche in Phnom Penh’s far north would be far worse.
“If our houses are destroyed, how much will the government compensate us?” said Him Tola, deputy chief of the commune’s Chrang Chamres I village.
“We won’t be able to live with our relatives, and if the government evicts us from here to a relocation site, we will lose our jobs here,” he added.
It’s a common refrain. Over the years, numerous communities across Phnom Penh have been forced from their land and dumped on far away relocation sites with little or no amenities or prospects of earning a living.
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