Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sanctuary ‘protected’



Sanctuary ‘protected’

Lumber found on economic land concessions last November that villagers claim was allegedly felled inside the Lumphat Wildlife Sanctuary in Ratanakkiri province
Lumber found on economic land concessions last November that villagers claim was allegedly felled inside the Lumphat Wildlife Sanctuary in Ratanakkiri province. PHOTO SUPPLIED

Sanctuary ‘protected’

More than 2,000 hectares of the decimated Lumphat Wildlife Sanctuary in Ratanakkiri province have been classified by the Ministry of Environment (MOE) as the sanctuary’s first community protected area.

Surrounded by three economic land concessions in Kon Mom district, the protected area is populated by a number of critically endangered species, including the white-shouldered ibis.

As well as the new classification, the ministry has also agreed to NGO-funded community patrols in the area, which rights groups say is being decimated by illegal loggers who allegedly transport felled timber onto the concessions.

“We’re excited because it will allow us to help the community set up a patrol because the [MOE] doesn’t have enough rangers to patrol the whole area,” said Bou Vorsak, program manager for BirdLife International in Cambodia.

But not everyone is convinced the newly protected sanctuary will prevent illegal logging.

“It doesn’t make sense that a community protected area has to be created within a wildlife sanctuary.… It sounds like someone isn’t doing their job if more protection is needed,” said Eang Vuthy, executive director of Equitable Cambodia.

Chhay Thy, provincial coordinator for rights group Adhoc, welcomed the move if it genuinely empowers the community to combat logging.

“Hopefully, this will help stop forest crimes from happening all the time,” Thy said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Kingdom's Covid cluster cases jump to 194

    The Ministry of Health on February 25 confirmed 65 new cases of Covid-19, with 58 linked to the February 20 community transmission. The latest cluster cases include nine Vietnamese nationals, five Cambodians, one each from Korea, Singapore and Japan, with the rest being Chinese. This brings the total number

  • Locations shut, dozens more Covid-19 positive

    The Ministry of Health has closed 23 locations in connection with the February 20 community transmission of Covid-19 and summoned for testing anyone who had direct contact with affected people and places. The number of discovered related infections has risen to 76, including 39 women. In a press release,

  • Cambodia's Covid cluster cases rise to 137

    The Ministry of Health on February 24 recorded 40 more cases of Covid-19, with 38 linked to the February 20 community transmission. Of the 40, two are imported cases involving Chinese passengers. The 38 include two Vietnamese nationals and one Cambodian, with the rest being Chinese. This brings the total cases

  • Covid cluster raises alarm, health bodies urge vigilance

    The Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia have expressed great concern over the February 20 cluster transmission of Covid-19 in the community. Both entities appealed for vigilance and cooperation in curbing further spread of the virus. Ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said

  • PM confirms third Covid-19 community transmission

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on February 20 announced the Kingdom's third outbreak of Covid-19 community transmission after 32 people tested positive in just over 10 hours. Addressing the public from his residence after an emergency meeting, Hun Sen said: "I dub it February 20 Community Event, in which 32 cases

  • Cambodia's cluster cases jump to 259

    The Ministry of Health on February 27 recorded 26 more cases of Covid-19 linked to the February 20 community transmission, bringing the total to 259 in one week. The 26 include three Vietnamese nationals and one Cambodian, with the rest being Chinese. The ministry noted that five of the Chinese