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Children stumble on submerged explosives

Four UXOs sit on the ground in Takeo province yesterday afternoon after they were discovered in a pond.
Four UXOs sit on the ground in Takeo province yesterday afternoon after they were discovered in a pond. PHOTO SUPPLIED

Children stumble on submerged explosives

Four children fishing at a pond in Takeo province’s Donkeo district on Wednesday stumbled across a clay pot containing four unexploded bombs.

District police chief In Mondol yesterday said the children had found the pot buried under mud, only to have a man take it from them, smash it and discover the explosive devices.

“They took [the pot] out and then a drunk man took it from the children and shattered it, because he thought there might be something valuable inside,” Mondol said.

The four bombs inside the pot appear to have been placed in the pond recently, rather than during the Khmer Rouge regime or civil war.

Mondol said police believe someone was storing the explosives there, intending on using them for nefarious purposes .

“They are new bombs, because they had not oxidised,” Mondol said. “If the bombs had been in a clay pot and under mud for a long time, they would have oxidised, but these bombs are new; so we suspect that someone was storing them in preparation for a criminal act.”

The provincial police department’s weapons and explosives management and fire control office is currently in possession of the bombs, and will hand them over to the Cambodian Mine Action Centre, Mondol said.

“Many people would have been killed or injured if these bombs exploded,” Mondol said.

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