N O further information has come to light about kidnapped British deminer Christopher
Howes, in the wake of political tension, according to Royal Cambodian Armed Forces
Radio communication was last established Nov 21 with a band of alleged Khmer Rouge
fugitives from Anlong Veng who were reported to have Howes, along with his Cambodian
interpreter Houn Hourth, with them.
"Contact with them was cut off while we were busy with internal problems,"
Gen Chea Sotha, chief of the Second Bureau at the Ministry of Defense, said Dec 10.
"We were concerned with other matters, that we did not think about them at the
It was earlier reported that the group were being chased by 80 KR guerrillas dispatched
by a hardline chief, Ta Mok.
"I cannot tell you anything because the matter is secret," said Khan Savoeun,
military commander of Region 4.
According to Sotha, RCAF in November had settled on a reward of $10,000-20,000 with
the KR fugitives to secure the release of the hostages.
Reports of Howes imminent release led his wife and children to travel to Cambodia
from England. They have since returned home.