The event was joined by several urban poor communities from Phnom Penh as well as from rural areas all around Cambodia under the theme of “Rural and Urban Poor formalization”. Around a thousand participants from affected communities, civil societies, unions and grassroots organizations gathered at Wat Phnom, in order to march to the Phnom Penh municipality, to deliver a petition to call for the formalization of the residents affected by land issues, through titling and onsite upgrading.
Supporters of the event gathered to hear talks by affected citizens outlining varying issues encountered across both rural and urban areas with regards to land grabbing and unjustified evictions. Participants called for recognition of their rights to their land and access to land titling services.
Although there was a police presence at the event, the celebration of World Habitat Day remained peaceful with lotus flowers and water bottles being distributed amongst participants and a real sense of togetherness was shared between affected communities, civil society organisations (including Banteay Srei), monks and grassroot unions.