Forest fires destroyed at least 10 hectares of fruit plantations on Saturday near Stung Treng district’s Reachea Nukol village, provincial officials said yesterday, according to provincial governor Loy Sophath.
Touch Sam Ol, Stung Treng’s deputy provincial police chief, said the fires were caused by people intentionally burning the forests in order to catch fleeing wild animals and sell them in the village.
“The reason why the fires occurred in Stung Treng was because people have burned the forests to catch wild animals for sale. To prevent fires from happening in the future, I would like to appeal to all villages
to raise awareness about fires, not to burn the forests and not to throw cigarettes into rice fields or forests during the dry season,” he said.
Stung Treng provincial Governor Loy Sophath said the fires began at about 11am Saturday morning and were extinguished at about 5pm, adding that banana, sugarcane, mango and other fruit plantations owned by villagers were completely destroyed by the fires.
“We are happy that we were able to put out the fires and prevent them from spreading to other places in the village,” he said.
“To prevent this happening in future, we will educate our villagers about the danger of fires so that they can prevent them and cooperate well with concerned authorities in preventing fires in the province.”