Protecting forested borders

Did you know? The Dong-Phayayen Khao Yai Forest Complex stretches all the way to the Cambodian border.

Poachers often cross borders in Southeast Asia searching for valuable wildlife and timber. Just last week, a tragic firefight on the Thai-Cambodian border resulted in the death of three suspected illegal loggers from Cambodia and the wounding of a Thai patrol officer.

Facing increasingly organized and well-armed criminal groups, forest rangers and border patrol officers must be prepared and cooperate effectively to locate, stop and prevent these incursions, which pose a risk not only to the environment and natural resources, but also to regional security.

Patrol navigation training field exercise  First aid refresher training

Earlier today, FREELAND Foundation wrapped up two weeks of specialized training for 60 Thai, Cambodian and Lao rangers and border security officials. The field-based course conducted in Khao Yai National Park focused on tactical cooperative border patrolling operations and information exchange on criminal activity.

To encourage continued post-training cooperation, participants were appraised of facilities and connected with existing inter-governmental initiatives for information sharing and suppression of transnational crime, including: the ASEAN Wildlife Enforcement Network; Lower Mekong Initiative under the Asia Pacific Economic Security Initiative; and the Border Liaison Office (BLO) mechanism of the PATROL Project.

This ARREST Program training was made possible with support from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), US Department of State and Thailand’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation.

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