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Kheng pushes for checkpoint curbs

Ven Rathavong / Khmer Times Share:
Poipet’s border is to be revamped. KT/Chor Sokunthea

Interior Minister Sar Kheng has renewed his demand that officials close all unauthorised entry points to the country to prevent human and drug trafficking and other transnational crimes.

Speaking at a ground-breaking ceremony for the new Poipet border checkpoint yesterday, he said unauthorised checkpoints lacked competent officials and provided no benefits.

“We open many international border checkpoints and bilateral gates,” Mr Kheng said.

“Why it is necessary to keep unauthorised border crossings?”

He said the Poipet checkpoint was an important economic gateway to Cambodia, used by tourists crossing into the country.

He urged officials and armed forces to cooperate and build more checkpoints with neighbouring countries, including Thailand, to serve the people and crack down on crime along the borders.

The Poipet checkpoint is to be renovated to make it easier for tourists and migrant workers to cross. Construction will take 18 months, paid for from the central government budget.

Banteay Meanchey provincial Governor Soun Bava said recently the new building would provide many benefits to travellers.

They would be able to rest and have food when they crossed the border, and it would be easier for officials to engage with them.

Mr Bava said the three-storey building on 1.5 hectares would have the capacity to issue passports and work visas.

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