Young Cambodians fight to preserve ancient martial art

In a small Cambodian town near the banks of the Mekong River, law student Oeun Bunthav tenses his slender torso and steels himself for an elbow strike to his head.

Bunthav is among 20 young Cambodians at an open-air club in Krong Areyksat training in the ancient Khmer combat martial art of Yutkromkhorm.

The practice was largely forgotten after many of its masters were killed in a purge of intellectuals under the communist Khmer Rouge between 1975 and 1979, but Bunthav and his fellow students are determined to learn its techniques and keep their heritage alive.

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