Four children drowned in a pit in Stung Trang district’s Arak Tnort commune in Kampong Cham province on Saturday.
They were identified as Chun Lita, 12, and her younger brother Chun Chou, 10, Reth Noy, a 13-year-old girl, and a boy Hang Hy, 11. They lived in the commune’s Bek Anlong village.
“Their bodies are currently undergoing traditional funeral ceremonies. The authorities have expressed their condolences for the loss of their lives,” Stung Trang district police chief Pak Cheat said on Sunday.
He said two additional children who had accompanied the four victims and witnessed the event said the six had gone to pick cashew nuts at a plantation, near an area known as Kilometre 6 on Saturday morning. The plantation is located some 1.5km from their village.
On the way home, they passed by a pit filled with water which is used to water the cashew nuts.
The four victims decided to swim, but the two witnesses did not. A while later, the two witnesses noticed that the other four were gasping for air and sinking. They ran to the village to seek help.
Cheat said the villagers informed the police, who inspected the site and found the children. All four had passed away.
The provincial authority donated 200,000 riel ($50),to each of the children’s families.
Cheat said the Kampong Cham provincial Red Cross on Sunday donated 200,000 riel, 50kg of rice and other foodstuffs to each of the families.