Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Rice wine deaths rise to nine

Rice wine deaths rise to nine

Rice wine deaths rise to nine

111010_05
Patients recover at Calmette hospital in Phnom Penh on Saturday after being poisoned by toxic rice wine last week in Pursat province.

The death toll from a batch of toxic home-made alcohol that poisoned scores of people attending a funeral in Pursat province’s Krakor district last week rose to nine over the weekend.

A total of 85 people were poisoned in Kampong Por commune’s Mat Prey village last Wednesday after drinking what is believed to have been pure methanol mixed with water at the funeral, commune chief Thy Phoeun said yesterday.

He said four of 76 patients rushed to Calmette hospital in Phnom Penh after they drank the highly toxic alcohol remained in critical condition.

“We brought them to Phnom Penh on October 6 and 7. Two people died along the way,” he said.

Mat Prey village chief Souk Houn, who is recovering from the poisoning at Calmette, said people sought medical attention after they began to get sick and lose their vision at the funeral.

“If they did not bring us to Phnom Penh, maybe we would have all died together. At the hospital in Pursat they did not have enough equipment for proper treatment,” he said.

Souk Houn said last week he believed the man whose death villagers had come to mourn last Wednesday had succumbed to the same toxic alcohol that poisoned those attending the funeral.

Chhorn Chhean, Pursat provincial director of police medical examinations, said one suspect had been arrested in connection with the poisonings . He said he had also encouraged villagers in the area to refrain from drinking rice wine.

The director of Calmette hospital’s emergency department could not be reached for comment yesterday.

MOST VIEWED

  • EU officials: Ending EBA an 18-month procedure

    EU officials have confirmed that it will take a total of 18 months to complete the procedure if Cambodia’s preferential Everything But Arms (EBA) trade agreement is to be withdrawn. According to EU Agriculture and Rural Development spokesman Daniel Rosario, the formal process has not

  • IPU slams government claim

    The president of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), Gabriela Cuevas Barron, has refuted a claim by the National Assembly that she “highly appreciated the achievements of Cambodia” in its July national elections with a tweet saying “Of course not!” before adding “No congratulations”. A delegation from

  • Conflict lingers on Paris Accords

    As the Kingdom prepares to commemorate on October 23 the 27th anniversary of the signing of the 1991 Paris Peace Accords, which ushered in an end to nearly two decades of civil war, there is political conflict on whether the tenets of the agreement are still being

  • EU agrees VN trade deal despite rights concerns

    The EU on Wednesday agreed to a free-trade agreement (FTA) with Vietnam, a country described as having a “major rights-abusing government”. This comes amid the 28-nation bloc preparing the procedure for a possible withdrawal of Cambodia’s Everything But Arms (EBA) preferential trade agreement on