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Hun Sen calls for vigilance as new Covid-19 case found

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Prime Minister Hun Sen and the Ministry of Health on Sunday reminded citizens to remain vigilant after a new case of Covid-19 was announced. Ministry of Health

Hun Sen calls for vigilance as new Covid-19 case found

The Ministry of Health on Saturday confirmed that another Cambodian-French man has tested positive for Covid-19 in the Kingdom.

It said he had travelled from England via Germany, France and South Korea and arrived in Cambodia on May 24. The new case brings the tally of confirmed cases in Cambodia to 126.

In light of the most recent case, Prime Minister Hun Sen and the ministry on Sunday reminded citizens to remain vigilant against Covid-19 by continuing to regularly practice protective measures.

The ministry warned that new cases may appear around the country because of travellers who don’t practice virus prevention techniques.

It also said sporadic infections are difficult to predict and pose a risk to public health. It has started observing citizens who travel for pleasure and attend mass gatherings.

If citizens don’t practice prevention measures it could lead to a second wave of infections, the ministry stressed.

“The negligent attitude and pacifism of some citizens pose a risk to public health. Infections can occur at any place, at any time and under any circumstance. This may lead to a second wave of Covid-19 infections in Cambodia,” it said.

The ministry requested all citizens to continue washing their hands with soap, alcohol or gel frequently, in addition to wearing face masks or scarves and maintaining social distancing of at least 1.5m.

​It also reminded citizens to avoid mass gatherings such as weddings, national and religious festivities, fellowship meals, birthday parties and open-house ceremonies.

Elderly people, widows, children and those with chronic diseases have a higher risk of contracting the virus, the ministry said.

​In a Facebook post on Sunday, Hun Sen reminded citizens to take an active role in preventing Covid-19, especially those who go on pleasure trips at resorts.

​He said citizens should always wear face masks and carry sanitation supplies when visiting markets, restaurants or hospitals.

​“Don’t take it lightly because our country has a low number of infections. This brutal Covid-19 is spreading throughout the world, and a vaccine hasn’t been made available yet. Everyone must be vigilant to protect their health,” he said.

​The ministry on Friday prepared 10 waiting facilities for passengers arriving in Cambodia by plane to streamline the quarantining process.

Previously passengers were taken to waiting facilities outside the Phnom Penh International Airport, such as the Cambodian Air Force Headquarters, the Chak Angrae Kraom Health Centre and Hun Sen Champuvorn High School.

The ministry said most of the country’s virus cases were imported from abroad and the government is attempting to ensure no new cases are imported.

Ministry spokesperson Or Vandine told The Post on Sunday that of the country’s three international airports, only Phnom Penh had prepared waiting facilities for passengers to be tested.

​“Sihanoukville International Airport will prepare [waiting facilities for sample analysis] soon and Siem Reap International Airport has yet to have any inbound international flights. But if there is, we plan to prepare the same there too,” she said.

The ministry confirmed that as of May 16, 3,637 flight passengers had their samples taken as they entered the country.

Since January, more than 21,000 people have been tested for Covid-19.

​Cambodia Airport Communications and public relations director Khek Norinda told The Post that during May, the three international airports combined to handle a daily average of 585 passengers – a drop of 98 per cent compared to May of last year.

He said most of the flight routes were to and from Chinese cities, Seoul (Korea) and domestic trips between Sihanoukville and Siem Reap.

“After almost a week into June, there has been no positive change in passenger traffic at the three airports.

From June 1-6, the number of passengers decreased by 97 per cent from last June” he said.


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