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Cambodian officials blame Thai truck drivers for spreading Covid in border province



PHOTO: Tautvaldas Tumenas/Flickr

Cambodian officials believe truck drivers from Thailand have brought more than just their goods into Cambodia. The officials suspect the drivers have spread Covid into their country, specifically, to the border province of Battambang.

The chief of the district, Sok Sokhun, says truckers that routinely cross the border could be why Covid is spreading throughout Battambang. He says it is possible the drivers were asymptomatic when they crossed the border. Or, it could also be that they lowered their guard when they got to Cambodia. Presumably, by “guard” the chief was referring to the masks and was not being metaphorical.

The inpouring of Covid cases is among vendors and an affected market near the Duong international checkpoint. It’s believed that the high number of vendors who have contracted Covid is because of truck drivers, with as many as 600 driving through the checkpoint a day, says Sok in the Khmer Times.

“This checkpoint has no migrant workers crossing over, only truck drivers who deliver goods between Cambodia and Thailand”, adds Sok.

The market in question, Kamrieng, where hundreds of trucks routinely stop to drop off goods, closed for 1 day, last Wednesday, in order to curb the spread of Covid. Testing was then performed on 700 vendors at the market. Over 250 people tested positive since Wednesday. Cambodia is currently tackling an outbreak of the Delta variant with new cases spiking since April.

The Duong border pass sits opposite the Ban Laem checkpoint in Chanthaburi, located in eastern Thailand.

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SOURCE: Bangkok Post


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