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Two injured in acid attack

Phnom Penh Post
Acid attack victim Sim Yi at Kosamak Hospital in Phnom Penh.

Two villagers were seriously burned in an acid attack – the year’s second – early yesterday morning in Kampong Cham province’s Pumron village in Memot district.

Memot district police officer Him Sarak said Sim Yi, 42, who suffered burns to his entire body, and his girlfriend, Srei Leak, 19, who had burns on half her body, were sent to the provincial hospital immediately after the attack. 

Sim Yi’s wife, Chheng Mao, 50, had been angered when her husband brought the younger woman back to carry on an affair, and doused the two in acid, said Him Sarak.

“The jealous wife poured acid on her husband and the girl at her house,” he said. 

Police are searching for the suspect, he added.

At Kosamak Hospital in Phnom Penh, where Sim Yi had been transferred in the afternoon due to the severity of his burns, medical staff who declined to be named said the victim was in critical condition and may not survive. 

Cambodian Acid Survivors Charity project manager Ziad Samman said Memot district was a “hot spot” for such incidents.

Fifty-four of the 298 acid attacks recorded by the NGO since 1984 have taken place in that district, he said, adding that this was possibly due to the easy availability of acid due to the many rubber plantations in the area. Acid is used in the processing and manufacturing of rubber. 

The attack is the second to occur since a new acid law was passed in December that aims to better control access to acid and mete out stricter punishment to attackers.

The perpetrator of the first attack, which occurred in January against a garment factory worker, has yet to be arrested, according to police.

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