Teen killed by UXO in Preah Vihear province

By: Kim Sarom

A teenager was killed while playing with an unexploded bomb in Preah Vihear province on Saturday, with three other people also reported injured.

Cheam Choeub, 14, died after reportedly picking up the explosive while riding in a cart with Soeung Chen, 30, Heang Bunrith, 12, and Cheam Sareth, 12, in Choam Ksan district. All four lived in the district, according to Im Yet, chief of police in Chaom Ksan commune.

Yet said Choeub did not tell the others on the cart he had picked up the device and, after triggering it, sustained serious injuries to his body and face, and died on the way to hospital. Bunrith was also seriously hurt, sustaining injuries to his right eye and body, and required hospitalisation. The other two sustained slight injuries.

The families of the children were offered between $50 and $250 in compensation by local lawmaker Suos Yara, according to Yet.

Almost 20,000 people were killed in Cambodia by landmines and unexploded ordnance and 45,000 were injured between 1979 and 2013, according to Mines Advisory Group.
Last year saw 154 mine-related casualties – including 21 deaths and 38 amputations – a 39 per cent increase from the previous year, according to the Cambodian Mine Action and Victim Assistance Authority. At least six have been killed by mines so far this year.