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Eleven others have their statements taken and are going to be charged.“This is a clear case of harassment,” said Nicholas Mujah, Secretary General of the Sarawak Dayak Iban Association. “They are not going to be charged and yet they will have to spend one night in the custody of the police. It shows that the companies are able to exert influence over the police and government.”The communities’ farm land was taken by Pelita-Tetangga Akrab in 2003 in a joint venture to plant oil palm, despite immediate protest and the filing of a court case by the communities affected. Though they have claimed to do this JV with the community, the vast majority of the communities had rejected the project and their right to free, prior and informed consent ignored.As a desperate measure, the villagers have taken to harvesting the oil palm fruits that were grown on their land. 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Not only that, the government could stand high to prove to the global community that it has taken credible efforts in protecting and restoring peat lands in reducing our country’s carbon footprints as the world braces for global warming,” Bujang said.- The Broken Shield

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