Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Soldiers die from suspected poisoning

Soldiers die from suspected poisoning

Soldiers die from suspected poisoning

Three soldiers had died and seven remained in a critical condition a week after eating food and home-made rice wine suspected to have been poisonous, officials said yesterday.

The soldiers were at a battlefield in the Chambok Karng and O’Thmor areas of Trapaing Prasat district’s O’Svay commune,  in Oddar Meanchey province, when they reported on December 2 that they had been poisoned.

Two soldiers died at the site and the other eight were rushed to the Siem Reap Hospital. One died soon after reaching the hospital, but the rest were reported to be recovering after receiving treatment.

“We really don’t know the reason for the deaths,” deputy military police officer Pok Sophal said.

“They had been eating food and drinking water as usual when they became seriously ill.”

Appropriate compensation had been paid to the dead soldiers’ families and traditional funerals had been organised for them, Sophal said.

Experts have conducted medical examinations, but the cause of death is still unclear.

Srey Naren, a co-ordinator for the Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association, said that although there were reports of the soldiers drinking rice wine, there had not been an official investigation into the deaths.

If the 10 soldiers were in fact poisoned by rice wine, this case follows a string of reports of rice-wine poisonings since 2010 that have killed 99 people from all over Cambodia, according to Ministry of Health officials.

Last August, at least 50 villagers from Pusat, Kampong Cham and Prey Veng provinces died after drinking rice wine containing high levels of methanol.

To contact the reporter on this story: Vong Sokheng at [email protected]

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia-Thailand rail reconnected after 45 years

    A railway reconnecting Cambodia and Thailand was officially inaugurated on Monday following a 45-year hiatus, with the two kingdoms’ prime ministers in attendance at the ceremony. On the occasion, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen and Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha travelled together from Thailand’s

  • Thousands attend CNRP-organised pro-democracy vigil in South Korea

    Thousands of supporters of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) on Saturday gathered in the South Korean city of Gwangju to hold a candlelight demonstration calling for the “liberation” of democracy in Cambodia. Yim Sinorn, a CNRP member in South Korea, said on

  • US Embassy: Chinese trade does not help like the West’s

    The US Embassy in Phnom Penh on Friday said relations between China and Cambodia did not create jobs or help industry when compared to the trade between the Kingdom and the US. “About 87 per cent of trade [with China] are Chinese imports, which do not

  • The Christian NGO empowering Cambodian families in Siem Reap

    With its basketball court, football pitch, tennis court and ninja warrior water sports area, you could be forgiven for thinking that the Siem Reap campus of International Christian Fellowship (ICF) Cambodia is a sports centre. But while these free, family-friendly activities are one of the