After Factory Fire, Workers Agree to Deal

After a fire burned through the Xing High Feng garment factory in Phnom Penh’s Sen Sok district on Monday night, the four unions representing more than 400 workers there agreed Tuesday to give the factory two months to rebuild and to receive $30 each in the meantime.

“The factory asked to close down for two months to clear out the junk and repair everything before starting again,” said Rath Minea, general secretary of the National Independent Federation Textile Union of Cambodia.

The fire at the factory began at 6:30 p.m. on Monday and destroyed 80 percent of the building before being put out by firefighters at 9:30 p.m., according to Prum Yorn, chief of the Phnom Penh fire department.

“The fire started inside the factory in the finishing section,” he said, adding that police were still unsure of the cause, but that nobody was injured. Hou Chantha, an administrator at Xing High Feng, said people living nearby had looted the factory overnight.

“Some equipment was stolen by the neighbors, such as sewing machines, clothes and other things,” she said.

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