Thomas Cristofoletti

Photographer
Burned
Location: Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Nationality: Italian
Biography: Hailing from the Italian Alps, Thomas Cristofoletti has been working in Southeast Asia as a humanitarian photographer and videographer for the last three years. Based in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, he’s also the co-founder of   RUOM , a... MORE
Public Story
Burned
Copyright Thomas Cristofoletti 2022
Updated Mar 2012
Topics Burning, Cambodia, Documentary, Environment, Forest, Indigenous, Mondulkiri, Photography, Photojournalism, Progress, Travel

Working on an assignment for the spanish NGO Paz y Desarollo in the remote areas of Mondulkiri (Cambodia) I had the opportunity to meet some indigenous families in the small Village of Pou Pring. They belong, or maybe is more correct saying belonged, to the Pnong ethnies who are an aboriginal Cambodian minority ethnic group, who speaking a Mon-Khmer language. The Pnong minority are normally not members of any organized religion, but instead are animists who revere nature. Nowadays they lost almost all the ancient traditions, they wear western dresses and, above all, they started to burn the forest that sourrounded the village (in order to plant potatoes and rubber trees).

Driving the road to the village was like entering in a some sort of hell… flame, smoke and trees on fire everywhere… with the forest they are burning their traditions, their language, their history, they beloved spirits.

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