Cambodian authorities extended their raid against illegal foreigners Sunday by deporting 77 Vietnamese to their birth country, Xinhua reported.
Uk Heisela, head of the investigation unit at Cambodia’s General Department of Immigration, told Xinhua that the Vietnamese, including a woman, were arrested in recent weeks for living and working in Cambodia without passports or valid visas.
Cambodia expelled 3,509 illegal foreigners last year, and more than 70 percent of them were Vietnamese nationals, Xinhua said, citing figures from the immigration department.
Many Vietnamese families have been living around the Tonle Sap Lake in Cambodia. Most of them were born there after their grandfathers or fathers left southern Vietnam to seek refuge from the chaotic French colonization and the Vietnam War.
Stricter immigration rules and a fishing ban on the lake have forced many of them to move back to Vietnam since 2012, and caused many others to be deported.
Without citizenship documents, many of them have been leading poor and unstable life in their home country, according to media reports.