Illegal Logger Reportedly Shot Dead in Thailand

A Cambodian national was shot dead by Thai security forces while logging illegally across the border, according to a military official and a rights worker, the latest in a spate of such deaths along the Thai-Cambodian border.

Lor Chan, a monitor for rights group Adhoc in Preah Vihear province, identified the dead man as Kom Channa, 25, who he said was shot dead while logging in Thailand on Friday.

Mr. Chan said the body has not yet been repatriated. Royal Cambodian Armed Forces Brigadier General Som Bopharath, who is stationed along Preah Vihear province’s border with Thailand, said he had heard about the fatal shooting but did not know the victim’s name.

“I just heard that Thai soldiers shot our villager last week, but it is not yet official,” Brig. Gen. Bopharath said.

Although the government has repeatedly entreated Thailand to arrest illegal loggers rather than use force against them, dozens of Cambodians seeking valuable timber across the border are shot dead each year.

Thailand says its security forces only fire on the loggers if shot at first.

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