A man took his own life by setting himself alight on Monday afternoon in Svay Rieng province, with witnesses citing the cause as crippling family debt but also acknowledging his history of suicide attempts.
Tasuos commune police chief Doch Sithorn identified the victim as Khat Dorn, 28, a tuk-tuk driver. Relatives and neighbours said Dorn had told his friends he was ashamed because his mother owed people money; he then purchased gasoline and self-immolated.
“The villagers and relatives tried to extinguish the fire to save him, but the victim locked himself inside the room; the victim had died before those people could break into the room . . . the body was as badly burnt as charcoal,” Sithorn said.
Dorn’s mother Keo Ter, 53, said he had attempted to hang himself twice in the past, but she and other family members had been there to help him.
She added she had borrowed more than $6,000 from a microfinance institution and other villagers to pay for the wedding of three of her children and to buy Dorn a tuk-tuk so he could make a living.