CPN Represent Cambodian CSOs at Rio +20
CPN coordinator Seng Sok Heng participated in the CSO Green Development Conference, running alongside the RIO+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Brazil from June 20-22. He was sponsored by UK-based Forest Peoples Program, with private donations specifically raised so the Prey Lang could be represented at the meeting. A LICADHO Canada staffer and the Advocacy and Policy Institute (API) director also participated.
Sok Heng made three presentations about Cambodia’s land and forest situation, the implementation of REDD+, and social movement in Cambodia. In one presentation, he described the impact of economic development on the livelihood of the indigenous and rural Khmer communities. In a second, he discussed the implications of economic land concessions, mining, forest crimes, and weak law enforcement on the implementation REDD+ program.
In the final presentation, he spoke of how Cambodian communities are mobilizing and forming CSOs and networks to challenge adverse effect of development and how they are working towards respect, promotion and protection of human rights. He described how Cambodian groups are also increasingly linking with each other and with the global community in their fight.
Prey Lang and the Prey Lang Community Network figured prominently in all of the presentations. With no translator to assist him, Sokheng participated exclusively in English, a language that he has been working hard to learn. Film-maker Fran Lambrick filmed all of the presentations and discussions so that excerpts could be included in her film on Prey Lang, to be called “Rubbernaut.” Sokheng also participated in discussions that contributed to recommendations that the CSO group submitted to RIO+ 20 conference of global leaders.