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Poipet sellers urged to return to site of Thailand riot

An overturned car sits in the road following a riot in Poipet town earlier this month. Photo supplied
An overturned car sits in the road following a riot in Poipet town earlier this month. Photo supplied

Poipet sellers urged to return to site of Thailand riot

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has urged nervous Cambodian vendors to reopen their shops at a market in Thailand across the border from Poipet town after a counterfeits bust by Thai authorities resulted in a riot and arrests earlier this month.

Vendors at the Long Keur market are reportedly too scared to set up shop after the incident on February 3, which began after plainclothes Thai police confiscated a raft of fake products from Cambodian sellers.

Enraged vendors overturned a car and pelted Thai authorities with stones, resulting in three-month Thai prison sentences for two Cambodian vendors, and the charging of a third.

In a press release issued on Friday, the Foreign Ministry urged Cambodian vendors not to fear the Thai police and reopen their shops on the condition that they no longer sell illegal products “which could make problems with the Thai police”.

The ministry also said it was arranging for a meeting between Thai authorities and the Cambodian consulate in Thailand’s Sa Kaeo province to find a way to further ease concerns.

Meng Huy, a Long Keur market vendor, said around 80 per cent of Cambodian vendors at the market had not shown up due to fears of another bust.

“Some have come back to work now, after they heard that Cambodian authorities would meet with Thailand to find a solution,” he said.

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