Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Almost 3 tonnes of illegal wood seized



Almost 3 tonnes of illegal wood seized

Almost 3 tonnes of illegal wood seized

Military police and Forestry Administration officials have arrested a man alleged to have been transporting almost 3 tonnes of endangered rosewood in Pursat province, according to provincial prosecutor Long Cheap.

Cheap said the man, identified by military police as Poch Noeun, 36, was apprehended on Tuesday while travelling along National Road 5 in Pursat’s Bakan district. “They arrested a man with a truck carrying 2,882 kilograms of rosewood,” Cheap said yesterday.

The bust is just the latest in a spate of rosewood seizures across the country in recent weeks, despite repeated government declarations that large-scale logging has been effectively dealt with, and observations from conservationists that the Kingdom’s rosewood stocks are largely depleted.

Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries spokesman Lor Raksmey said Pursat is home to more forestry crime than any of Cambodia’s 24 other provinces. He also called out other provinces through which Prey Lang protected forest runs – Kampong Thom, Kratie, Stung Treng, Ratanakkiri, Preah Vihear and Oddar Meanchey – as being rife with illegal timber transporters.

Environment Ministry spokesman Sao Sopheap noted yesterday that illegal timber transporting was beyond his ministry’s mandate, but he was aware there had been “challenges” in the implementation of the prime minister’s recent Circular Number 5, which handed provincial authorities responsibility for tackling illegal logging.

Marcus Hardtke, who has worked in conservation in Cambodia for almost two decades, said that on a recent trip to areas neighbouring Prey Lang, timber smugglers appeared to remain active. “As soon as the night sets in there’s timber on the road everywhere, not just small trucks either,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Phnom Penh placed in two-week lockdown

    The government has decided to place Phnom Penh in lockdown for two weeks, effective April 14 midnight through April 28, as Cambodia continues to grapple with the ongoing community outbreak of Covid-19, which has seen no sign of subsiding. According to a directive signed by Prime Minister

  • Cambodia on the verge of national tragedy, WHO warns

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia warned that the country had reached another critical point amid a sudden, huge surge in community transmission cases and deaths. “We stand on the brink of a national tragedy because of Covid-19. Despite our best efforts, we are

  • Hun Sen: Stay where you are, or else

    Prime Minister Hun Sen warned that the two-week lockdown of Phnom Penh and adjacent Kandal provincial town Takmao could be extended if people are not cooperative by staying home. “Now let me make this clear: stay in your home, village, and district and remain where

  • Businesses in capital told to get travel permit amid lockdown through One Window Service

    The Phnom Penh Municipal Administration has issued guidelines on how to get travel permission for priority groups during the lockdown of Phnom Penh, directing private institutions to apply through the municipality's One Window Service and limit their staff to a mere two per cent. In

  • Vaccination open to foreigners in Cambodia

    The Ministry of Health on April 8 issued an announcement on Covid-19 vaccination for foreigners residing and working in Cambodia, directing the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training and local authorities to register them. Health minister Mam Bun Heng, who is also head of the inter-ministerial

  • Ministry names types of business permitted amid lockdown

    The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training singled out 11 types of business that are permitted to operate during the lockdown of Phnom Penh and Takmao town, which run through April 28. Those include (1) food-processing enterprises and slaughterhouses; (2) providers of public services such as firefighting, utility and