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More than 6,000 migrant workers returned from Thailand

Tith Kongnov / Khmer Times Share:
Secretary of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ouch Borith (L) speaks during the handing over ceremony of Cambodia’s donations to Nepal. With him is the Minister of Health of Nepal Rey D. Trissey. AKP

A total of 6,465 migrant workers have so far returned from Thailand over the past two weeks and about 129 workers have been allowed to return to their homes after being quarantined at centres in Battambang, Banteay Meanchey, Pailin and Oddar Meanchey provinces.

Pen Kosal, governor of Oddar Meanchey province, said yesterday he had instructed relevant officials to ensure that those who return from Thailand through the O’Smach International border checkpoint must be quarantined as instructed by the Ministry of Health.

He said authorities in villages, communes and districts have to report immediately if they suspect or come across migrant workers who have come from Thailand and have returned home without documents to prove they have undergone quarantine.

“I call on all workers returning from abroad to take part in the implementation of health measures, don’t be afraid or refrain from being quarantined in centres,” Kosal said.

Provincial police chief Major General Huot Sothy has also instructed local authorities and people to immediately report if they know that there are people from abroad returned home without undergoing quarantine.

“I would like to appeal to our residents in the villages, communes, districts in the province to report such workers immediately to the village and commune chief or the police at phone numbers 097-780024 and 012-500011,” Maj Gen Sothy said.

Provincial health department director Khloak Huot said that from December 21 to Sunday, it has recorded more than 1,972 migrant workers who returned from Thailand.

Voeurng Bunreth, Battambang provincial health department director, said yesterday said that from December 20 to Sunday there were 1,735 migrant workers who returned from Thailand and 1,418 are still undergoing quarantine. He said 15 workers tested positive for COVID-19 of whom nine have recovered and six are still being treated in hospital.

“I urge all citizens to cooperate with the relevant authorities and not to run away from the quarantine centres,” Bunreth said.

Pailin province governor Ban Sreymom said yesterday that from December 20 to Sunday, 169 workers returned from Thailand and 30 have returned home after completing quarantine.

Oum Reatrey, Banteay Meanchey province governor, said yesterday that from December 20 till yesterday a total of 2,589 migrant workers returned from Thailand.

“We have regularly instructed the border authorities to deploy forces at the main border checkpoint and educate people who cross the border that they have to undergo the mandatory 14-day quarantine,” he said. “The authorities will work hard to cooperate closely with any officials to prevent workers from fleeing the quarantine centers.”

According to a report on the website of the General Department of Immigration, Thai authorities on Saturday sent back 26 Cambodians, including 13 women and two children, who illegally crossed the border.

It said that on the same day, authorities in Koh Kong province prevented 15 other Cambodians from crossing into Thailand illegally.

The report said that on Sunday evening, Thai authorities also sent back two other Camodians who crossed the border illegally.

Meanwhile, Cambodia yesterday donated facemasks and medical equipment to Nepal.

Secretary of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ouch Borith, delivered the donations on behalf of Prime Minister Hun Sen. He told the Minister of Health of Nepal Rey D. Trissey that the humanitarian donation was a testament to the deep ties, solidarity and friendship between the Cambodian and Nepalese people.

“The Royal Government of Cambodia remains committed to working closely with Nepal and the international community to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic and its potential long-term impact on people’s lives,” Borith said.

He added that the outbreak of COVID-19 has seriously affected all aspects of human life, bringing many challenges not only to public safety but also seriously damaging the supply chain and mobility of the people, which is why the economies of all countries around the world are declining.

“In this context, a collective and united response within the bilateral and multilateral frameworks is indispensable to address the devastating effects of this deadly disease and ensure a speedy and effective recovery, especially during the post-pandemic stage,” he added.

“With the joint aspiration and commitment of our two countries, I firmly believe that the existing close ties and fruitful cooperation between the two countries will be further strengthened and expanded for the mutual benefit of both our people, as well as for peace, stability and common prosperity in the region and the world,” Borith said.

Cambodia donated two million facemasks, 20,000 N95 masks, and other necessary medical materials, including 20,000 goggles, 20,000 PPE Sets, 500 units of manual temperature checking equipment, 20,000 face shields, 20 ventilator machines, 20 patient monitoring accessories, 500 containers (25kg each) of ChloramineB Powder, 1,000 sets of safety plastic boots, 2,000 units of hand liquid soap, and 10,000 fabric facemasks.

Nepal is the fourth country to which Cambodia has provided mask and equipment to fight COVID-19 after Laos, Myanmar and Timor-Leste.

The Health Ministry reported that another returnee migrant worker has tested positive for the virus bringing the total cases to 382.

She tested positive on Sunday after returning from Thailand.

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