Cambodia decided Wednesday to lock down the country's capital Phnom Penh for the first time since the novel coronavirus outbreak began early last year.
The decision was made after infections were confirmed in many parts of the capital beginning earlier this week, following the first and largest community COVID-19 outbreak at a garment factory and a market in the city.
Phnom Penh and neighboring Takmao city will be locked down for 14 days beginning on Thursday morning, the government said, adding that any non-essential travel will be restricted.
Cambodia's Health Ministry said Wednesday it had detected 178 new cases the previous day, of which 149 were found in Phnom Penh alone.
While Cambodia's number of coronavirus infections had been among the lowest in the world until recently, the country now reports a total of over 4,800 infections with 35 deaths.
Roughly 1 million of some 12 million Cambodians eligible for vaccination have received at least one dose of either the Sinopharm or Sinovac vaccines from China or the AstraZeneca vaccine produced in India, the ministry said.
To date, Cambodia has received more than 2 million doses of these three vaccines and will get 8 million more from Saturday through August.