Authorities in Koh Kong province on Wednesday briefly stopped environmental activists as they were cycling from Koh Kong to Phnom Penh in a campaign to have Koh Kong Krao island designated as a protected area.
After seizing the activists’ bicycles, deputy provincial governor Sok Sothy said that “gathering and marching at any place” required prior permission, like in “every country.” The Environment Ministry issued a statement that the campaigners were playing a “political trick.”
Eighteen activists, including members of the Mother Nature environmental group, embarked on a five-day journey on Tuesday to deliver a petition to Prime Minister Hun Sen’s cabinet asking to have the island protected. The campaigners said they were concerned about potential environmental destruction.
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