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 Full text 
Friday, 26 October 2012 - Strasbourg OJ edition

Situation in Cambodia

  Cecilia Wikström (ALDE).(SV) Mr President, some time ago I visited my fellow Democrat and friend Moso Koa from the Sam Rainsy Party in Cambodia. What I saw across the country was horrifying, and the images may remain with me forever. Countless families have fallen victim to the seizure of their homes and land. Both the government and major companies have seized land that these families have been cultivating for generations. The people affected have not received any compensation and have been left to fend for themselves. They now have no legal rights and are helpless.

The EU’s ‘Everything But Arms’ programme is essentially a good initiative; however, in reality it has had some very negative effects with regard to sugar and a number of other agricultural products, as the gigantic sugar companies have now taken over and are cultivating agricultural land. Countless settlements have been razed to the ground and thousands of families have been left homeless in order to make way for sugar plantations, which are taking advantage of the profitable agreement with the EU.

Therefore, I welcome the fact that the agreement contains an exhortation for an end to be put to all this, and an appeal to Cambodia to give the opposition leader Sam Rainsy the opportunity to return to his country before the election.

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