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Issue No:78
  • :January
  • :2018

Samudra Report No.78, January 2018


Banding Together

By uniting to fight land grab by business interests, members of the Preynub II Community Fishery in Cambodia have set an example for other communities

This article is by Nick Beresford (, ACountry Director, United Nations Development Programme, Cambodia

It’s early Tuesday morning, and along a dike that separates the mangrove forest from the fish nursery habitat, Ream Mosavy is collecting blue shell mussels. For generations, his community has harvested mussels here, a means to their very survival. But in 2016, a powerful business person grabbed 45 ha of the community’s land, threatening the community’s food supply. Approximately 45 ha of the mangrove forest were encroached upon by the entrepreneur who wanted to convert the land into a coconut plantation. “Our community depends largely on natural resources—fishing and forests—for our daily needs, and we don’t have to spend a lot of money on purchasing food items. If the forest is no more, we would find it extremely difficult to survive,” says Mosavy, Chief of the Preynub II Community Fishery.

Mosavy knew if the community did not act soon, they would lose their land. So they organized a campaign to regain control of it. First, a...

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