Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - 1,000 villagers back from Thai refuge



1,000 villagers back from Thai refuge

1,000 villagers back from Thai refuge

BOEUNG TRAKUAN - Nearly 1,000 Cambodian refugees who last week fled a Khmer

Rouge attack walked home to a devastated village on Tuesday after their leaders

convinced them it was safe.

UN High Commissioner for refugees (UNHCR)

officers were on hand to observe the repatriation of the 996 people, half of

them children, who had been living in temporary shelters in Thailand.

"I

am pleased to see them back but I am not sure about the security," said UNHCR

official Brian Richer, watching as the Cambodians filed along escorted by Thai

soldiers, with children riding on their parents' shoulders or pushed along in

two-wheel carts.

"Anyway, they can cross the border back [to Thailand]

anytime they want if there is fighting or they hear rumors of fighting," he

said.

Cambodian Major Kuan Swin, 35, reassured the returnees of their

safety. Half of over 400 houses and the village market of Boeung Trakuan were

burned down by the Maoist Khmer Rouge faction in an April 21 attack on a

government base, in which two people were killed.

Residents said they

believed they wanted to frighten the local populace.

Most of the

returnees will now shelter temporarily in pavilions in the center of the

government army base. Those whose houses were intact returned

home.-Reuters

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia on the verge of national tragedy, WHO warns

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia warned that the country had reached another critical point amid a sudden, huge surge in community transmission cases and deaths. “We stand on the brink of a national tragedy because of Covid-19. Despite our best efforts, we are

  • Phnom Penh placed in two-week lockdown

    The government has decided to place Phnom Penh in lockdown for two weeks, effective April 14 midnight through April 28, as Cambodia continues to grapple with the ongoing community outbreak of Covid-19, which has seen no sign of subsiding. According to a directive signed by Prime Minister

  • Vaccination open to foreigners in Cambodia

    The Ministry of Health on April 8 issued an announcement on Covid-19 vaccination for foreigners residing and working in Cambodia, directing the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training and local authorities to register them. Health minister Mam Bun Heng, who is also head of the inter-ministerial

  • Cambodia gears up for muted New Year festival

    The recent curfew and restrictions imposed in the capital and other Covid-19 hotspots were intended to break the chain of transmission, Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said as municipal and provincial authorities issued new directives banning certain activities during the upcoming Khmer New Year

  • Culture ministry: Take Tuol Sleng photos down, or else

    The Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts has told Irish photographer Matt Loughrey to take down the photos of Khmer Rouge victims at Tuol Sleng Genocidal Museum which he allegedly colourised and altered to show them smiling. The ministry said Loughrey's work is unacceptable, affecting

  • Covid-19 vaccination now obligatory

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on April 11 issued a sub-decree making Covid-19 vaccination compulsory for individuals unless they have a medical certificate proving they have pre-existing health conditions that prevent them from doing so. «This applies to all members of the armed forces and civil servants