Officials to Be Questioned Over Destruction of Flooded Forest

A district governor and two fisheries officials are among 10 people who will be questioned at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court next week over the destruction of flooded forest to make way for dry-season rice fields in Kampong Thom province, an official said yesterday. On July 27, the court charged six people, including Samprorch commune chief Peanh Poul, provincial director of water resources Cheat Syvutha and four farmers for their role in clearing flooded forest. … Military police said on July 5 that in just one week, they confiscated 38 mechanical excavators near the Tonle Sap river that they believed were being used to clear flooded forest, which is crucial to maintaining healthy fish stocks in the Tonle Sap, as fish use the roots of such trees as hatcheries during the wet season.