Thai soldiers shot four Cambodians who illegally crossed the border to cut rosewood in Thailand’s Sisaket province on Wednesday.
All four were hit but escaped. Two of the loggers, Dorn Vy, 20, and his brother-in-law, Kak Samney, 21, ran back to the Cambodian side of the border, where locals took them to a hospital.
The other two loggers vanished into the woods, their fate unknown.
Speaking from the Anlong Veng district referral hospital by phone, Samney said that they were logging to feed their families.
They were ready to carry the wood bundles back home on foot when a group of soldiers appeared and opened fire.
“We screamed at them to stop shooting, but they did not stop,” said Samney.
Nov Sam Orn, the hospital’s director, said that Vy was shot in the right calf and both arms and Samney was shot in left calf and both arms. The bullets left clean wounds and both men will recover.
The local border commander who oversees the area could not be reached for comment yesterday, and other border officials said they were not aware of the case.
Touch Ra, a deputy chief at the Thai-Cambodian Border Relations Office, said that logger shootings happen two or three times a month, but rarely cause fatalities.
The Cambodian Ministry of Interior reported in August that at least five illegal loggers from Cambodia were shot dead in Thailand in the first half of the year.