Gov’t pressures KTV, nightclubs to remain closed

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Police arrested 285 people at a nightclub in Phnom Penh Thmey commune in the capital’s Sen Sok district on July 28 for not following the Ministry of Health’s advice on Covid-19 preventive measures. Facebook

Municipal and provincial authorities are doubling down on their efforts to enforce virus prevention measures by actively enforcing the temporary suspension of karaoke parlours and nightclubs, a directive that was first issued by the government on March 17.

If business owners do not comply, their businesses will be closed.

Siem Reap provincial deputy police chief Soeun Sen told The Post on Monday that 10 large karaoke parlours, 16 beer gardens, seven nightclubs, and three cinemas have been closed in the province, in line with Ministry of Health guidelines.

Prime Minister Hun Sen recently advised karaoke parlours and nightclub operators to shift to simple restaurants to stay open, he said.

He said three karaoke parlours in the Kingdom had been disguising themselves as restaurants to stay open.

“We closed those locations and made the owners stop their actions. If they continue to open, we will close their businesses,” Sen said.

H said that the authorities are continuing to follow the government’s advice by forcing karaoke parlours and nightclubs to suspend their businesses.

Preah Sihanouk Provincial Hall spokesman Kheang Phearum said provincial authorities had been working hard to ensure the venues stayed shut.

He said there are currently no karaoke parlours or nightclubs open in the province.

“For Preah Sihanouk province, there is no such case yet. Adult entertainment locations in Preah Sihanouk are not operating,” he added.

National Police spokesman Chhay Kim Khoeun said karaoke parlours and nightclub closures are being conducted with the assistance of provincial Unified Command Committees.

“We never arrest anyone for opening karaoke parlours and nightclubs. There was a night club closure case in Phnom Penh. We assembled almost 200 people to advise them, but we let them all go back home.”

Phnom Penh Municipal Police chief Sar Thet and Municipal Hall spokesman Met Meas Pheakdey could not be reached for comment. However, according to a July police report, authorities closed many nightclubs and karaoke parlours after they secretly opened.

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