Steps taken to preserve remains of razed prehistoric earthwork site

An update about the Cambodian prehistoric earthwork site that was flattened last week by unauthorised construction works – the authorities have stepped in to work with the land owners so that the planned buildings can be moved elsewhere, while efforts are bing made to also cordon off the area because archaeological material can still be recovered from the site.

Cambodian Authorities Rally to Protect Historical Site
Devata.org, 10 September 2010

The Memot Rubber Plantation Director General told Mr Heng that they were never informed about the Samrong Earthwork, or such work would have never taken place. He also said that the 69 square hectare Samrong site (about 171 acres) no longer belongs to the company, but was transferred to the Royal Government for development of new village through a project of the National Divestment Committee.

In further on-site meetings, Mr Heng found company officials cooperative and a number of positive outcomes ensued. First, Mr Heng determined that while the earthwork surrounding the prehistoric village was destroyed no deep excavation had yet taken place. This meant that the deeper “inner platform” of the mound, which holds the most significant archaeological evidence, was undisturbed.


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Author: Noel Tan

Dr Noel Hidalgo Tan is the Senior Specialist in Archaeology at SEAMEO-SPAFA, the Southeast Asian Regional Centre for Archaelogy and Fine Arts.

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