Eight provinces on the Thai border are set to enter lockdown after Cambodia’s Prime Minister Hun Sen ordered the measures. The temporary regional shutdown comes as Thailand sees record-high coronavirus deaths and cases.

Cambodia will launch a lockdown in eight provinces on its shared border from midnight on Thursday in an attempt to prevent coronavirus cases from Thailand pouring into the country. The prime minister ordered the lockdown late on Wednesday “to prevent the community spread of the Covid-19 delta virus” in Cambodia. The eight border provinces affected are Koh Kong, Siem Reap, Pailin, Pursat, Battambang, Banteay Meanchey, Oddar Meanchey, and Preah Vihear.

Due to last until August 12, the measures will see border points between Cambodia and Thailand closed, except for the transportation of goods and in case of emergencies. Citizens in the eight regions are under a strict stay-at-home mandate, with group gatherings temporarily banned. The conducting of business has also been halted. 

As Cambodia’s lockdown looms, Thailand registered a record-high count of daily coronavirus cases and deaths. On Thursday, it recorded 17,669 new positive infections in one day, with 165 people having succumbed to the virus. The new figures bring its case total to more than 561,000 infections and 4,562 deaths. 

Cambodia managed to weather earlier surges of coronavirus well, until cases began to climb in February, with an exponential increase from April onwards. Since the outbreak of the pandemic last year, the South-East Asian country has registered more than 75,900 cases and 1,350 deaths.

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