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More chemical bomb sites found

Ven Rathavong / Khmer Times Share:

Eleven new chemical bomb sites have been discovered by the Cambodian Mine Action Centre in Prey Veng province.

The sites are in an area that was formerly part of Svay Rieng province prior to its transfer to Prey Veng in 2013.

Deputy Svay Rieng provincial governor Toch Polyva said the 11 new chemical bomb sites were found yesterday in the former area of Tros commune in Svay Rieng’s Romeas Hek district.

Chhlon Chim, Ta Sous village chief in Tros commune, said he and villagers found the sites and contacted CMAC.

Mr Chim noted the bombs were technically located in Krabao commune in Prey Veng’s Kom Chay Meas district if the land transfer of 2013 was taken into account.

“Before those areas were in Svay Rieng province. In 2013, they were put under the control of Prey Veng province. But my villagers still have land plots there,” he said, noting he and the villagers found the sites yesterday on cashew and cassava farms.

According to Mr Chim, yellow and white powder in plastic packages, likely from barrel bombs dropped by the US during the Vietnam War, were discovered.

“I went to check the bomb sites and they emitted foul-smelling smoke and caused me to get itchy,” Mr Chim said. “When the sites get wet, the chemicals become exposed and emit foul-smelling smoke.”

Mr Chim said CMAC officials visited the sites and installed danger signs. He added that he has instructed farmers to stop their work until CMAC disposes of the bombs.

Mr Chim added that there are two more suspected sites in his village which CMAC officials will inspect on Friday.

On Tuesday, nine villagers were hospitalised after another chemical bomb site was discovered in Romeas Hek’s Korki commune.

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