Report on Football Gun Incident Is Inconclusive

Days after tempers flared and a Cambodian man pulled a gun during a football match in Phnom Penh, the two teams say the incident is forgotten and a nonspecific report has brought the matter to a inconclusive end.

The armed confrontation at an informal football match on

March 21 drew the attention of the Cam­bodian Football Federation, which requested a report from Seng Kim Horn, who organized the weekend tournament.

That report, completed Thurs­day, states that one player pointed a gun at an opponent, who “fell to his knees, begging for pardon from the man with the gun.” The report says the incident erupted from rough play between the two players.

No one is named in the report.

“I could find the names if I wanted, but I do not,” Seng Kim Horn said Thursday.

The match was between the Bay­on Wanderers, a team of mostly Westerners, and the Phnom Penh All-Stars, whose members represent a number of prominent Cambodian families.

Witnesses said one of the All-Stars brought a gun onto the field and threatened an opponent. Flanked by a bodyguard, he later struck the opponent with his elbow, according to the report.

No one was injured in the confrontation, and no one contacted the police.

“For us, the incident is closed,” a representative from the Bayon team, who declined to give his name or identify the gun-wielding soccer player, said Wednesday.

An All-Stars representative also declined to identify the assailant, but said he had been kicked off the team.

“What the player did is not right…. He doesn’t play for the team anymore,” he said, also de­clin­ing to give his own name.

In a separate incident of violence against foreigners, police say they continue to investigate a recent spate of sling-shot attacks against Western tourists and expatriates along the riverfront.

Police said they have identified a suspect as the son of a high-ranking Cambodian official, but lack evidence to make an arrest.

“We cannot arrest the suspect without documents. Otherwise we will be in trouble,” Huy Song, deputy police chief of Daun Penh district, said Wednesday.

(Ad­dition­al reporting by Yun Samean)


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