Saturday, 11 July 2015

Land Grab Protest in Vietnam Results in Death of Farmer

Land Grab Protest in Vietnam Results in Death of Farmer

Le Thi Cham, 54, is pinned down under a bulldozer track during a protest in Hai Duong province, July 10, 2015. Screenshot of video posted by an RFA listener.

A 54-year-old Vietnamese woman died on Friday from injuries sustained when she was crushed by a bulldozer while she and fellow farmers were protesting the confiscation of farmland in northern Vietnam.

In an incident filmed by witnesses and posted on Youtube, Le Thi Cham is seen pinned under the bulldozer's track while she and dozens of farmers shout in vain to get the driver to stop.

According to Vietnamese state media, the farmers were protesting over the meager compensation for farmland seized to build an industrial park in Cam Dien, Hai Duong province, about 60 km (36 miles) from the capital Hanoi. Cham was taken to the hospital in critical condition, but died of her injuries, the reports said.

Land grabs in which government officials use their authority to confiscate and sell land to developers are a common cause of social unrest across Southeast Asia and China, with cases causes small- and-large scale protests on an almost weekly basis.

In many cases, local villagers say they receive little compensation or less than was promised by authorities and are forced to vacate fertile land for less-productive parcels far from their places of origin and with poor infrastructure.

Reported by RFA's Vietnamese Service. Translated by Minh-Ha Le. Written in English by Paul Eckert.

From Radio Free Asia (RFA)

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