The body of a policeman stationed at the Cambodia-Laos border, where last week a standoff between the countries’ soldiers nearly escalated, was found on Monday in the Sekong River, two days after he had gone missing.
Boun Noeung, 47, was stationed with Cambodia’s Border Regiment 701 and went missing at 4pm on Saturday when he was driving a boat alone on the river in O’alay area, Deputy Provincial Police Chief Ek Sidorn said yesterday.
He said that over 20 policemen stationed at Koh Russey outpost had been searching for him but that only his boat, shoes and hat were found the same day.Police found him on Monday 10 kilometres down river.
“He knows how to drive boats very well and was familiar with the area, but we do not know why he fell into the water and drowned,” he said.
One of Noeung’s colleagues, however, said on Sunday that Noeung was drunk and fell into the river when driving the boat from O’Kuk station.
“We looked for him for two days, but didn’t find him,” said the policeman, who requested anonymity.
Sidorn, however, disagreed with the allegation that Noeung had been drunk, saying that no wine had been sold at the front line while the border situation was tense.
“I think that he had high blood pressure when he was driving the boat and fell into water, because he never had his health checked,” Sidorn said.
Noeung’s body was sent to his family in Siem Pang district’s Thma Keo commune for a traditional funeral.