Vietnam’s Ministry of Public Security has raised concerns over the numbers of Vietnamese nationals crossing into Cambodia to gamble amid fears over indebtedness and safety as gamblers are held hostage or killed.
Authorities say there are more than 50 casinos and some 36 cockfighting pits just inside the Cambodian border.
Vietnam and Cambodia have a common border that runs 1,270 kilometers with 24 official border gates in 10 provinces. But there are also numerous illegal crossing points along the porous border.
Vietnamese police officials say there are concerns over the social impact from the casinos on local communities. But they said that “actions” undertaken by local authorities had led to a reduction in the numbers crossing the border. The Vietnam media reports did not specify what the “determined actions” by the authorities were.
In 2014 it was reported that more than 1.6 million Vietnamese crossed the border illegally into Cambodia, with some 234,100 reported to be gamblers.
Vietnamese police said the network of gambling operations were ‘sophisticated’ despite efforts by Cambodian and Vietnamese authorities.
A Lieutenant General in the Ministry of Public Security, Do Kim Tuyen, has called for more coordination among organizations to halt gambling.
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