Rising coronavirus cases and related deaths have led the authorities in Cambodia to order coffins from neighboring Thailand, local media reported.

The Southeast Asian nation reported 889 new COVID-19 cases and 27 deaths on Friday, pushing the total 65,500 and 1,052 respectively.

Prime Minister Hun Sen has directed the purchase of more than 3,000 coffins, according to the English-language newspaper Phnom Penh Post.

Kol Vireak, Cambodia’s secretary of state at the Interior Ministry said they have already distributed more than 1,000 coffins to 12 provinces, and that delivery of coffins from Thailand could be late as the Buddhist-majority country is itself undergoing an intense wave of virus cases.

“At least we have enough coffins for cremation or burial. We are not at the point where we have to dispose of these bodies without coffins. We have to have coffins because we have to respect the souls of our citizens who have departed from this world due to this disease,” Vireak said.

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