An intoxicated man stepped on a landmine in Pailin province early yesterday morning, injuring both of his arms and one leg, according to local police.
Chhor Manh, Boyakha commune police chief, said yesterday that the victim, Nor Sarom, 44, was drunk when the incident occurred at about 1am. Sarom got lost on his way home, unwittingly entering a well-known landmine-ridden area near his farm.
“He was drunk and walked into the landmine area”, Manh said. “His arms are extremely injured and his leg has a minor injury,” he added. After the explosion, Sarom was able to walk to the local police station.
He was then transferred to a hospital in Battambang, where he remains. Manh said Sarom will likely never use his right hand again.
Manh said there were signs on the trees warning people not to enter the contaminated area, but the man did not see them.
“There are two cases of landmine explosions in this commune this year and two people got injured”, Manh said.
Heng Ratana, director-general of Cambodia Mine Action Centre (CMAC), said that as of July, 60 people had been killed or injured by landmines in Cambodia during 2016.
CMAC estimates that there were about 4 to 6 million landmines laid in Cambodia over the span of decades of war lasting from 1970 to 1997.