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Wildlife Alliance lauded for patrols

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Environment ministry spokesman Neth Pheaktra (centre) show hand saws seized from loggers. For the last 18 months, he said the authorities cracked down on 171 cases of land encroachment and sent 87 cases to courts. Heng Chivoan

Wildlife Alliance lauded for patrols

The Ministry of Environment highly values the efforts of the Wildlife Alliance in helping Cambodia to protect its environment and natural resources in the Cardamom Mountains, which cover 1.4 million hectares in Koh Kong, Pursat and Kampong Speu provinces.

Ministry spokesman Neth Pheaktra told The Post on Monday that for the last 18 months, ministry rangers, Wildlife Alliance officials and related parties went on patrol 7,654 times.

They cracked down on 171 cases of land encroachment, filed 204 legal complaints, issued 277 fines and sent 87 cases to courts.

The patrol teams removed 983 cottages built illegally, retrieved 2,179 cubic metres of wood, 1,954 mechanical saws, 169 vehicles, 43 bulldozers, 173 motorbikes, and 271 homemade trucks.

They also removed 32,322 traps, rescued 747 wild animals and retrieved 206 more wild animals, said Pheaktra.

He expressed admiration for the authorities and related parties who cooperated to patrol protected areas in Cambodia.

The ministry and Wildlife Alliance signed a memorandum on their cooperation to protect 1.5 million hectares of conservation areas in the Cardamom Mountains.

They include the Tatai Wildlife Sanctuary, Peam Krasop Wildlife Sanctuary, Southern Cardamom National Park, Central Cardamom National Park and Botum Sakor National Park.

“This good cooperation and effective law practice in protected areas are important in protecting the environment, natural resources and biodiversity,” Pheaktra said.

He said participation from Wildlife Alliance proved to be a valuable help to the government in preventing forest offences and protecting natural resources and biodiversity.

“This is honest and fruitful cooperation between the Ministry of Environment and Wildlife Alliance in protecting the environment and natural resources. This effort enables the areas to be protected effectively and also decreases many forest crimes.

“This effective protection allows Cambodia to sell carbon credits in Tatai Wildlife Sanctuary and the Southern and Central Cardamom National Parks,” said Pheaktra.

He said Cambodia has 69 protected areas on 7.3 million hectares.

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