Statement For Immediate Release


Statement from Conservation NGOs on the killing of two wildlife rangers

November 12, 2015 - Cambodia, Phnom Penh – WCS, WWF-Cambodia, BirdLife International-Cambodia, Conservation International, Fauna & Flora International, and Wildlife Alliance would like to extend their deepest condolences to the families of Sieng Darong, Forestry Administration ranger and Sab Yoh, police officer, two wildlife rangers who were killed on November 7 in the Preah Vihear Protected Forest during a patrol.

All across Cambodia, wildlife rangers courageously patrol protected areas to preserve the country’s invaluable natural heritage against logging and poaching. They understand the danger of their duty and are fully committed to their mission to protect the wildlife and forests against offenders.

The conservation organisations are alarmed by the violence of the crime committed against brave law-enforcement officials who were fulfilling their mission. They urge the authorities to take the necessary actions to bring the criminals to justice. This heinous crime highlights the importance of a strong collaboration between conservation NGOs, their community partners and the government to empower law enforcement officials and rangers in their important mission to fight against illegal activities that destroy the country’s natural capital.

“Every day rangers and police officers risk their lives to protect wildlife and the forests. We should not allow the criminals to destroy the forests of Cambodia and to threaten and murder those working tirelessly to protect this country’s natural heritage. Darong and Yoh will always be remembered as conservation heroes.” said Ross Sinclair, Director of WCS Cambodia.

“Rangers perform a difficult and dangerous job, and it is deeply distressing to the entire conservation community, and civil society, that these forest rangers could be killed so cold-bloodedly while they slept.” said Chhith Sam Ath, Director of WWF-Cambodia.

“We expect to see these murderers brought to justice, and will continue our efforts to support the government to protect natural resources in Cambodia.” said Seng Bunra, Director of CI Cambodia. 

Globally, over 100 rangers are killed each year, with 80% of them murdered by poachers and loggers. This underlines the dangerous and vital work that rangers carry out on the front lines of conservation. We remain united and committed to support communities and government to protect natural resources in Cambodia.

The conservation community in Cambodia will remember Sieng Darong and and Sab Yoh as determined heroes, fully dedicated to their mission. They are the face of the important fight led by many others to preserve Cambodia’s natural heritage.


For further information, please contact:

Mr. Stephen Sautner, WCS Communications