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Hunt on for 15,000 migrants as four more contract virus

Hunt on for 15,000 migrants as four more contract virus

The Ministry of Health on Tuesday night confirmed four new coronavirus infections among passengers of the Viking Cruise Journey.

This brings the latest tally in Cambodia to 91.

Two of the victims are British nationals aged 61 and 79, while the other two are US nationals aged 59 and 62. All four tested positive only on Monday.

The cruise ship arrived in Phnom Penh on March 7 and travelled to Kampong Cham on March 10. The ministry found three among a total of 64 passengers infected with the coronavirus and immediately placed it in quarantine.

The ministry also announced that four other patients – all Cambodian nationals – have since recovered and been discharged from hospitals in Battambang and Tbong Khmum provinces.

Meanwhile, Minister of Interior Sar Kheng confirmed a report in The Post on Tuesday that Cambodian migrants returned en masse from Thailand just before its borders closed. Their health was not checked for the Covid-19 pandemic.

Quoting an official at the Daung International Checkpoint in Battambang who declined to be named, The Post said that around 1,000 migrant workers rushed onto Cambodian soil unchecked by medical staff.

However, Sar Kheng said 15,000 migrant workers entered Cambodia through the Daung International Checkpoint and the Poipet International Checkpoint in Banteay Meanchey.

He has since ordered local authorities throughout the Kingdom to immediately track them down, educate them about the disease and lock down villages where Covid-19 cases are found.

“To be honest, we did not have the capacity to check all of them and we were unable to quarantine them for 14 days. We can only try to track them to their village, district, and province, and then send the local authorities to control the situation. This is what we can do now,” he said.


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