A Cambodian national was fatally shot near the Thailand-Cambodia border on Wednesday in the latest of a string of deadly incidents along the border this month, officials said yesterday.
Theng Sokla, 27, a native of Pailin province’s Sala Krao district, was hunting for animals on a Thai farm a few hundred metres across the border when he was shot in the chest at about 3pm on Wednesday, said Huy Kim Khorn, the deputy director of the Cambodian-Thai Border Relations Office at the Prum border checkpoint.
“The body has been taken to be examined by the Thai authorities, and they will hand over the body to the family on Friday,” he said, adding that Sokla’s parents found the corpse when they initiated a search a day after their son went missing.
According to Kim Khorn, Sokla regularly crossed the border to catch wild animals.
Chhim Chamnan, chief of the Cambodian-Thai Border Relations Office for Pailin and Battambang, said that shotguns are regularly used by farmers trying to protect their crops from animals.
“We are investigating to find the farm owner and the shooter,” Chamnan said. “We believe the victim did not die from bullets of the Thai army or from the black-clad [special forces] unit,” he added.
Neth Sary, a Cambodian consular official based in Thailand’s Sa Kaew province, said he had not been informed about the shooting.
This is the fourth incident this month in which Cambodians are said to have been shot at in Thai territory. In two separate cases, one on March 5 and one on March 12, Cambodian military officials claimed Thai soldiers killed a total of 15 illegal loggers. Thai authorities denied the claims.