More To Face Ax on Logging

Twenty-two ministerial officials and a number of district governors will be suspended as part of a crackdown on illegal logging in Mondulkiri province, the minister for parliamentary relations and inspection said Sunday.

The move was agreed on during an interministerial meeting held Saturday, said Khun Hang, a Funcinpec appointee and chair of the anti-logging committee.

“The ministries reported to me that six officials of [the Ministry of] Interior, nine from Defense, two from Environment, three from Agriculture and two from Justice will be suspended,” he said Sunday.

The suspensions will go into effect this week, he said.

In addition, a number of district governors will be suspended pending further investigation.

The government reported earlier this month that new roads had been cut and 380 truckloads of logs had been transported from Mondulkiri to Vietnam last November and December.

Last week Hun Sen ordered the suspension of Mondulkiri Governor Chhaom Bun Khan (Fun) and his deputies, replaced by an emergency task force.

Three Vietnamese companies have been implicated in the scandal. Khun Hang said a complaint has been filed with a Cambodian court against one of the companies, Tang Hokhum Import/ Export Co Ltd.


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