|The section of Bình Ghi river in An Giang Province where the group of Vietnamese nationals swam across to return home. — VNA/VNS Photo|
HÀ NỘI — The Foreign Ministry’s Consular Department is working with domestic authorities to verify the identity of and provide citizen protection measures for Vietnamese nationals who recently escaped from a casino in Cambodia.
The group left Kandal Province and swam across Binh Ghi River to return home, said spokeswoman Lê Thị Thu Hằng on Saturday.
Hằng added that the ministry had asked the Vietnamese representative agencies in Cambodia to contact authorities and inspect the casino in Chrey Thum Hamlet, Sampeou Poun Commune, Kaoh Thom District.
The Foreign Ministry and Vietnamese representative agencies in Cambodia will continue keeping a close track of the case as well as situation of Vietnamese guest workers, offering quick and necessary citizen protection measures and protecting legitimate rights and interests of Vietnamese citizens, she said.
She said the Foreign Ministry and Vietnamese representative agencies in Cambodia had saved and brought home more than 500 citizens who were lured into working there, as well as offered support in procedures to thousands of others.
The Foreign Ministry asked agencies and domestic press to raise awareness of outgoing Vietnamese guest workers, she said.
On August 18, the group of Vietnamese nationals were arrested by An Giang Border Guards.
A total of 42 people tried to escape from the casino. Some have sustained minor injuries. One person was missing and another, a 16-year-old male from Kon Tum Province, was caught by the casino staff in his attempt to escape.
A body suspected of the missing person was found in Bình Ghi River on Saturday, said an official of An Phú District, the southern province of An Giang.
The Police Investigation Agency of An Giang Police said they decided to temporarily put two people in custody for allegedly "organising illegal exits from Việt Nam".
They are Nguyễn Thị Lệ, 42, and Lê Văn Danh, 34, from An Giang Province's An Phú District.
According to initial investigations, Lệ and Danh had previously organised for six people among the 42 Vietnamese nationals to illegally exit Việt Nam to enter Cambodia.
Apart from these six people, Lệ and Danh said they had earlier organised for many people to illegally exit Việt Nam and enter Cambodia to work at casinos.
Investigations are continuing. — VNS