This week, Cambodia has come together in mourning for the deaths of 28 people trapped in the wreckage of an illegal development in the coastal city in Sihanoukville. The collapse came at the height of more than a decade of unchecked and often unregulated development along Cambodia’s coast as international investors raised up scores of hotels and casinos on land rented from local landowners. In August 2008, Southeast Asia Globe investigated the scramble for Sihanoukville’s ever-more-valuable land as Russian oligarchs and local tycoons alike carved up Cambodia’s coast in the hopes of raking in major profits – often at the local people’s expense. Now, for the first time, you can read that story online.
Sang Run, his hair stiff with sea salt, chugs out into the Gulf of Kompong Som in his weather-beaten turquoise boat, looking for blackling. He scours the shallows waiting for a shoal to appear, before skimming his net across the water. He does the same every day, taking his catch to auction in Cambodia’s southern port city of Sihanoukville.
Cathy Scott-Clark, Adrian Levy, and Peter Harris