Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Cambodian peacekeeper injured by bullet in South Sudan

Cambodian peacekeeper injured by bullet in South Sudan

A United Nations peacekeeper stands at the UN compound in Juba earlier this week, where heavy fighting has seen multiple peacekeepers injured in recent days. AFP / UNMISS
A United Nations peacekeeper stands at the UN compound in Juba earlier this week, where heavy fighting has seen multiple peacekeepers injured in recent days. AFP / UNMISS

Cambodian peacekeeper injured by bullet in South Sudan

A member of Cambodia’s UN peacekeeping team in South Sudan has suffered a gunshot wound, and while senior military officials say the incident was not related to the rapidly deteriorating security situation in the civil war-torn country, there are conflicting reports as to what happened.

Phal Samorn, deputy director general of the National Centre for Peacekeeping Forces, Mines and Explosive Remnants of War, said the Cambodian peacekeeper was hit by a bullet that had been fired into the sky during South Sudan’s independence day celebrations. “Rith Virak, who is a member of the RCAF, sustained light injuries to his left hand,” Samorn said.

Ministry of Defence spokesman Chhum Socheat also said the peacekeeper was injured during a celebration and the gunshot wound was not due to the ongoing fighting. He added the Cambodian peacekeepers are not in “clear danger”.

“This was an accident and it was not in war,” he said. “We have them far away from the war zone.”

However, an official at the centre, who asked to remain anonymous, said Virak was injured by bullets from the fighting in Juba between soldiers of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army and the opposition.

He said Virak was outside guarding the Cambodian military camp on July 7 when he was injured.

Two Chinese UN peacekeepers were recently killed in the conflict. The Kingdom currently has 153 peacekeepers stationed in South Sudan.

Additional reporting by Vong Sokheng

MOST VIEWED

  • Malaysia MP accused of ‘influencing law’

    Malaysian Member of Parliament (MP) Larry Sng arrived in Siem Reap early on Wednesday, in what was slammed by one NGO as efforts by Kuala Lumpur to “influence Cambodian law”. The Malaysian Embassy in Phnom Penh requested on January 30 “cooperation from the Ministry of Foreign

  • Ministries begin measures to offset EU’s EBA decision

    In the wake of the EU’s controversial announcement this week that it has begun the withdrawal process for Cambodia’s Everything But Arms (EBA) preferential agreement, government ministries and political analysts continued to share their reactions and economic mitigation plans in preparation for the

  • Emirates launches route connecting Phnom Penh, Bangkok

    Emirates will launch a daily service on June 1 linking Phnom Penh (PNH) and Bangkok (BKK). The service from Phnom Penh to Dubai, via Bangkok, will provide more flight options to passengers travelling between the capitals of Cambodia and Thailand. Travellers from the Southeast Asian nations

  • Phnom Penh police to crack down on traffic violators

    Sar Thet, the head of the Phnom Penh Municipal Police, has reorganised the duties of the capital’s traffic officers to tackle the city’s growing congestion, with a focus on those who refuse to obey the road laws. Street vendors who clog Phnom Penh’