More than a thousand onlookers converged on Phnom Penh’s busy Sisowath Quay on Monday afternoon after the decomposing body of an unidentified man was spotted floating in the Tonle Sap.
The barefoot body, apparently of a foreigner, clothed in blue jeans and a red T-shirt, had a length of black rope tied to the left wrist.
Police said at the scene that the body was spotted shortly after 3 pm and that they had not determined a cause of death but suspected suicide.
Phsar Kandal I commune police chief Mok Sopha said he had heard three days earlier from fishermen that a man had jumped from the Chroy Changva bridge, and that this could be his body.
A group of five laborers, who were paid a total of $25 by police, hauled the body up the riverbank shortly after 4 pm.
The crowd, including tourists and children, followed the men as they carried the body on a woven grass mat down Street 154 to Wat Ounalom where it was laid down.
Mous Thy, 28, a worker on the Mekong tour boat, said he had first seen the body, with the rope tied to the wrist, floating towards the riverbank at about 4 pm.
Daun Penh district police chief Phan Pheng said Monday evening that police had examined the body and had found nothing to indicate a cause of death or the man’s nationality.
“We don’t know how to make a conclusion,” he said of the badly decomposed body.