Turkish Men Arrested, Released After Sihanoukville Knife Fight

A Turkish man was released from military police custody in Sihanoukville on Monday after agreeing not to seek further revenge against another Turkish national whom he chased with a machete following a business dispute, an official said on Tuesday.

Has Samoeun, commander of the Preah Sihanouk province military police’s information and security bureau, said that the attacker, whom he identified only as Sahad, 34, became enraged on Monday afternoon when he was fired from his job at the Eos Oceanfront Hotel on O’Chheuteal Beach by the victim, Mehmet, 40, who had recently taken over management.

Mr. Samoeun said he did not remember the full names of the two men and could not confirm their identities because he was out of his office.

“The two started having a verbal argument after Mehmet told the attacker to leave,” he said. “Sahad got angry after he was fired and he rushed to get a machete and then chased Mehmet.”

A video of the clash posted to Facebook does not capture the beginning of the dispute, but does show Sahad advancing toward Mehmet with a long blade—slashing at, but failing to strike, his head.

Mehmet dodges the swipes while backing away and then turns and runs across a road, apparently onto the premises of another hotel. He then turns around and charges at Sahad, taking a few swings with what appears to be a cleaver.

Sahad is then seen throwing a chair at Mehmet, which Mehmet catches and uses to block a second chair before advancing again, using the chair as a shield as Sahad swings wildly at him.

The clip ends with Sahad retreating into the Eos hotel as Mehmet brandishes his cleaver, in an apparent threat or warning.

Mr. Samoeun said military police officers stationed near the hotel were alerted to the melee and separated the two men before arresting them and transporting them to the local military police headquarters.

He said they were released after Sahad signed an agreement to not seek further revenge, while Mehmet agreed to not file a complaint if Sahad left him alone in the future.

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