Over 700 illegal fishermen netted in Cambodia

Khmer Times

A four-month government campaign has exposed 730 cases of illegal fishing on Tonle Sap lake.

Noa Thuok, secretary of state at the Ministry of Agriculture, said 30 people have been sent to court so far as a result of the inter-ministerial crackdown, which began in December.

Community organizations welcomed the action and urged officials to continue efforts to combat fishing offenses.

Minh Bunly, Tonle Sap project coordinator for the Fishery Action Coalition Team, said he is worried there could be an increase in illegal fishing if ministry officials suspend their work to focus on the commune elections.

“We are concerned illegal fishing will rise again in May and June,” Mr. Bunly said. “The perpetrators are scared of the authorities, so if officials stop what they are doing during the elections, offenses will go up.”

Om Chhim, the 57-year-old chief of Kompong Pluk community in Siem Reap province’s Prasat Bakorng district, said he was satisfied with the crackdown.

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