Two Injured by Mines in Kampot and Koh Kong

Landmine explosions in Koh Kong and Kampot provinces on Monday and Tuesday seriously injured a man and a teenage girl, according to local officials.

On Tuesday, Suot Matimas, 14, climbed a fruit tree in Koh Kong province’s Mondol Seima district, near the Thai border. Upon jumping down with her fruit, she detonated a mine, according to provincial border police chief Chhim Nin.

Border police stationed nearby responded to the noise of the explosion and found Matimas crying at the foot of the fruit tree, said Lieutenant Colonel Nin. The girl was taken to the provincial hospital for treatment of severe leg injuries sustained in the explosion.

Separately, in Kampot province’s Kompong Trach district, near the Vietnamese border, Chhay Soeun, 53, was injured while burning his bamboo field about one kilometer from his house.

As the field was still smoldering, he dragged two bamboo trees through the field, at which point a landmine exploded, according to Sim Nov, deputy district police chief. Mr. Nov said the explosion was either triggered by the heat of the fire, or by the bamboo being carried by Mr. Soeun.

The farmer was wounded in his right side and on his back by metal shrapnel and was taken for treatment at a nearby hospital in Vietnam.

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