Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Killers on foot and moto

Killers on foot and moto

Killers on foot and moto

TWO men in bodyguard-type uniforms on a large motorcycle and another pair of attackers

on foot were responsible for throwing the grenades, eyewitnesses say.

Two grenades, possibly the first ones thrown, came from behind the protesters, according

to witnesses interviewed by the Post and human rights workers.

One was thrown by a man who had earlier been mingling with the demonstrators, waving

a banner. He moved from the crowd, further into the park, before lobbing a grenade

from a distance of about 15-20 meters.

Almost instantaneously, a second grenade went off, apparently thrown by a second

man a short distance from the first.

Both men took off - not so much as in a run but a fast walk, according to several

witnesses - diagonally across the park toward Wat Botum.

The crowd of protesters caught sight of the first man and cries of "Catch that

man, he threw a grenade" went up.

"Everyone ran after him and then we saw the second man too," said a bodyguard

of Sam Rainsy's who would not be named.

As the pair made their escape, a group of soldiers at the north end of the park spread

out in a line.

"They raised their guns at us as we approached them," said the bodyguard.

"Somebody kicked me in the back and I fell down. I got up and there were five

or six guns pointed at me. I thought I was going to die.

"The soldiers would not let us pass. I last saw the men running across the road

toward Wat Botum."

The bodyguards' version was corroborated by several other witnesses interviewed separately.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the protest, virtually opposite the gates of the

National Assembly, two more grenades had gone off.

Witnesses said at least one grenade was dropped by one of two men on a big motorcycle

- possibly a Honda Rebel - as it was driven north past the assembly building.

As an assembly employee in a white car had stopped near the parliament gates to get

a leaflet from demonstrators, the motorcycle overtook it.

"The motorcycle slowed down behind the car, and one of the men took out a hand

grenade and threw it," said another moto-driver, adding that the motorcycle

was driven on toward the Royal Palace.

While many witnesses said they heard three explosions, blast marks on the ground

show there were four grenades. Several witnesses were adamant that only one grenade

came from the motorcyclists.

The fourth may have come from near the National Assembly building, according to witnesses.

The white car and a truck - loaded with cases of "King Kong" wine - coming

from the opposite direction were caught in the grenade blasts. Two people in the

truck, its windscreen and tires blown out, were seriously injured.

Witnesses said the motorcycle rider and passenger were both wearing safari-suits

such as the type commonly used by bodyguards.

The two men in the park were described as wearing khaki-colored trousers. One wore

a light pink shirt and the other a nylon-looking green olive jacket. Both were aged

about 40.

MOST VIEWED

  • Omicron patients can stay home: PM

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has given the green light for anyone who contracts the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron mutation or any other variant to convalesce or receive treatment at home or in any other reasonable non-healthcare setting. The new decision supersedes a restriction on home care for

  • The effects of the USD interest rate hike on Cambodian economy

    Experts weigh in on the effect of a potential interest rate expansion by the US Federal Reserve on a highly dollarised Cambodia Anticipation of the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike in March is putting developing economies on edge, a recent blog post by

  • Cambodia’s first ever anime festival kicks off Jan 22 at capital’s F3 centre

    Phnom Penh's first ever Anime Festival will bring together fans, artists, shops and other local businesses with ties to the Japanese animation style for cosplay competitions, online games, pop-up shops and more on January 22, with Friends Futures Factory (F3) hosting. F3 is a project that

  • PM eyes Myanmar peace troika

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has suggested that ASEAN member states establish a tripartite committee or diplomatic troika consisting of representatives from Cambodia, Brunei and Indonesia that would be tasked with mediating a ceasefire in Myanmar. The premier also requested that Nippon Foundation chairman Yohei Sasakawa

  • Demining rat ‘hero’ Magawa dead at 8

    A landmine-hunting rat that was awarded a gold medal for heroism for clearing ordnance from the Cambodian countryside has died, his charity said on January 11. Magawa, a giant African pouched rat originally from Tanzania, helped clear mines from about 225,000sqm of land – the equivalent of 42

  • Hun Sen gets 4th Covid shot, urges compatriots to follow

    Prime Minister Hun Sen and his wife Bun Rany on January 14 received their fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine and called on compatriots to follow suit as the Omicron coronavirus variant continues to spread in the community. This marks the launch of Cambodia's fourth-dose vaccination campaign,