The Phnom Penh municipality late on April 23 issued a directive dictating that all residents living in the capital's Red Zones have their samples taken for Covid-19 testing.
The municipal hall also ordered all state-owned markets and other improvised ones — such as those that sprawl near factories, hospitals and residential areas — throughout the capital shut for 14 days effective immediately through May 7.
The directive comes as Phnom Penh remains the country's main Covid-19 hotspots, with 522 infections reported on April 23 alone.
According to the directive, any residents in the red zones who fail to have their specimen for Covid-19 will face legal action.
Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng on April 19 designated a number of villages and communes in three districts as "Red Zone", where residents are forbidden from leaving their home, after Prime Minister Hun Sen revised lockdown measures for areas at highest risks of Covid-19 transmission.
The new Red Zone areas include Stung Meanchey I, II and III communes in Meanchey district; Choam Chao I commune in Por Senchey district; and villages 14, 16 and 17 in Tuol Kork district's Boeung Salang commune.
According to the decision, those residing in the Red Zone are barred from leaving or doing any activities including sport and exercise outside their residence, except for medical reasons or other emergencies. That includes a visit to medical workers for Covid-19 testing or vaccination against the disease at a designated site closest to their residence or as permitted by the authorities.
Phnom Penh had recorded a total of 6,348 Covid-19 cases with 4,453 receiving ongoing treatment and 57 fatalities as of April 23, according to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention.