Crimes and traffic accidents of which tourists were the victims increased by 33 per cent in the first six months of 2013, compared with the same period last year.
Tourism Police Department director Nhearn Vibol said that 396 tourists had fallen victim to crime and motor accidents so far this year, compared with 298 at this point in 2012.
“In response to this increase, we decided to release a directive to improve the security and safety for the people and tourists,” Vibol said. “Multiple police forces will join this action.”
Vibol partially attributed the upsurge in crime against tourists to more tourists venturing into areas where they previously did not. He added that not all crimes against tourists were committed by Cambodians, referencing an armed robbery in Kampong province and a murder in Phnom Penh committed by foreigners.
Upon hearing of the recent uptick, Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism Noun Samet urged the tourism police and other departments to step up their protection of foreign and domestic tourists.
The Cambodian government recently heightened its efforts to increase international tourism, setting a goal to attract four million tourists by the end of 2013.