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PM warns public Covid-19 is no laughing matter

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Prime Minister Hun Sen speaking at a ceremony for National Fish Day on July 1 held at Ang Trapeang Thmor in Banteay Meanchey province’s Phnom Srok district. SPM

PM warns public Covid-19 is no laughing matter

Prime Minister Hun Sen warned the public about using social media or other means to spread confusion regarding Covid-19 and instructed the authorities to arrest those responsible for it, saying that Covid-19 is a subject that needs to be taken seriously to prevent the disease from spreading.

Speaking at a ceremony for National Fish Day on July 1 held at Ang Trapeang Thmor in Banteay Meanchey province’s Phnom Srok district, Hun Sen said that a man had recently been arrested for spreading fake news about Covid-19.

“Don’t believe fake news about vaccinations. We had him arrested for spreading fake news on TikTok for posting a dead body and saying that the person had died from getting vaccinated in Koh Kong province,” he said, adding that the man who had been arrested was a resident of Tbong Khmum province.

“Something like this should not be the subject of pranks. There have been no deaths from Covid-19 in Koh Kong since April. I’m warning you now that anyone who treats Covid-19 like a joke will be arrested because this subject isn’t funny. If you make fun of it you are causing chaos in society,” he said.

Hun Sen said currently there are no Covid-19 patients in any hospitals across the country.

“If we don’t arrest him, it implies that we don’t respect the law either. The whole world is combating fake news right now, why can’t Cambodia do that too? What benefit is there to fake news? If you don’t attempt to spoil society or threaten and slander people, no one will arrest you [for what you say online],” he said.

Hun Sen confirmed that three more people have now tested positive for Covid-19 on June 30, however, at the National Fish Day ceremony it was reported that five additional people have tested positive for the disease.

The prime minister called on the public to resume practicing Covid-19 prevention measures and he said everyone must get vaccinated, including booster shots.

There have been no reported deaths in Cambodia due to Covid-19 vaccines to date and over 94 per cent of the population has been vaccinated.

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